Room to Grow Evaluation

The Room to Grow program provides new mothers in New York City and Boston with a mix of (1) parenting supports from licensed social workers; (2) connections to community resources; and (3) over $3,000 in material support per year. With funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation we are launching an ambitious randomized controlled trial of the program’s effects on financial security and parental resilience and well-being.


Poverty Effects of Eliminating LIHEAP

The CPSP estimated the poverty effects of President Trump’s March 2017 proposal to eliminate the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, also known as LIHEAP, that helps low-income households pay their utility bills and keep the heat on in the winter. We found that eliminating LIHEAP would move more than 200,000 people into poverty, hurting the rural poor the most. Read our brief to learn more.

EITC & SNAP Take-Up in NYC

Government policies and programs provide critical resources to low- and moderate-income families in need. But many eligible families do not access benefits to which they are eligible. With funding from Robin Hood, we are examining who these families are, and why they do not tap the resources to which they are entitled.

Modeling a Universal Child Allowance

With funding from the Century Foundation, we have used the Supplemental Poverty Measure to model the potential effects of a universal child allowance on both poverty and deep poverty among children. To read the full report, click here.

Qualitative Study of Service Use in NYC

Poverty, hardship, and other forms of disadvantage are prevalent among New York City individuals and families. Yet many disadvantaged New Yorkers don’t seek help for their problems from the community-based organizations that might help them improve their situations. We interviewed 70 members of our Poverty Tracker survey to find out why. Click here to read our brief on the key findings of the study.

Food Stamps & Consumption

The SNAP program provides low-income families with guaranteed support to purchase food and avoid hunger and food insecurity. But SNAP benefits may also free up critical resources to support non-food related consumption. With funding from the Institute for Research on Poverty at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, CPSP researchers are analyzing the effects of the SNAP program on such outcomes.


Renters Credit

Another major issue preventing low-income individuals and families from thriving is the high cost of housing. CPSP researchers and affiliates are therefore exploring the potential impacts of a refundable renter’s credit on both poverty and housing burden. This research is being conducted in preparation for a special volume of the Russell Sage Foundation Journal of the Social Sciences.


Cost of Living, SNAP, Health, and Nutrition

With funding from the United States Department of Agriculture, through the University of Kentucky Center for Poverty Research, CPSP researchers and affiliates are investigating how cost-of-living moderates the SNAP program’s effects on purchases of healthy and nutritious foods. To read the working paper, click here!


With funding from the Annie E. Casey Foundation and The JPB Foundation, our researchers have created a unique data set implementing the Census’ and Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Supplemental Poverty Measure back to 1967. This data set allows for more accurate measurement of poverty over time, and more critically the accurate assessment of the role of government policies and programs in reducing poverty.

Click here to download the historical SPM data and here to access state-level poverty estimates dating back to 1976.