Habitat for Humanity International awards $350,000 to investigate impact of housing on wealth building

Yung Chun, research assistant professor of the Social Policy Institute and Brown School at Washington University in St. Louis, received a $350,000 research award from Habitat for Humanity International to evaluate homeownership programs implemented by local Habitat affiliates and investigate the impact on wealth building for households with low incomes. Through this project, the Social […]

Data is for Everyone: A Data Science for Social Impact Summit

This event took place in person from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on November 15 at the Clark-Fox Forum in Hillman Hall at Washington University in St. Louis and online. About the event At the summit, social sector colleagues with diverse roles and levels of experience joined together to connect and learn new strategies for leveraging data […]

Household Financial Security: What can we learn from research in the U.K.?

A Trans-Atlantic Policy Forum could bring together academic researchers,
policy makers, advocates, and corporate leaders in the U.S. and U.K. to develop
insights to fuel changes in public policies and corporate behavior to promote the
financial security of low- and moderate-income (LMI) individuals and families.

Apply to become a 2022-2023 Graduate Policy Scholar!

Applications for the Graduate Policy Scholar program are now open to all graduate students at Washington University in St. Louis! The Graduate Policy Scholar program provides students from all fields of study with impactful opportunities and training in policy. Offered by the Social Policy Institute and the Clark-Fox Policy Institute, the yearlong program provides students […]

Humanizing artificial, expanding intelligence: Putting AI in context with the social sciences and the social sector

The relationships between artificial intelligence (AI), the social sciences, and the social sector have incredible potential. It is easy to imagine a disconnect between something that is, in name, artificial, and the study and support of human relationships. How are advancements in data science, such as AI, furthering the missions and shared objectives of non-profits, […]

Bridging community knowledge into social policy

By Abaki Beck, research manager at the Social Policy Institute I grew up picking root medicine with my family, knowledge passed down to my grandmother and aunts from their mother, and to my grandmother from her mother. I also grew up with a dedication to community activism from witnessing the health, economic and educational disparities […]

James F. McDonnell Foundation awards $255k to study student mobility in St. Louis

As a part of the St. Louis Research Practice Collaborative (SRPC) and in partnership with St. Louis University, Jason Jabbari, research assistant professor with the Social Policy Institute at Washington University in St. Louis, has joined a team that received a $255k grant awarded by the James F. McDonnell Foundation for research on student mobility. […]

Congratulations to the newly inducted Graduate Policy Scholars from the 2021-2022 cohort!

Congratulations to the fifth cohort of the Graduate Policy Scholars who were inducted as scholars this May. Students represented departments across the university, including Arts & Sciences, Brown School, School of Medicine, School of Law, and the Olin Business School. The students who completed this rigorous program learned and engaged with policy as they developed […]

Disparate financial assistance support for small business owners

Small business owners experienced a drastic economic disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Government pandemic assistance failed to reach many small business owners, especially those historically underserved by financial institutions. Drawing on a 2021 survey of 246 small business owners, the Social Policy Institute at Washington University in St. Louis descriptively examined the extent to […]

The financial impacts of a near-miss with natural disasters

By Dan Zhao, postdoctoral research associate, and Michal Grinstein-Weiss, director When disaster strikes, it is easy to neglect the people on the boundaries. When assessing the impact of adverse economic shocks, whether it be natural disasters, pandemics, or factory shutoffs, the focal point is on those who were directly devastated by the shock. However, the […]

New report suggests Child Tax Credit reduced usage of high-cost financial services

Press Release: April 14, 2021 St. Louis (April 14, 2022)— In a new report published with the Global Economy and Development program at Brookings Institution, researchers at the Social Policy Institute at Washington University in St. Louis and Appalachian State University found that families who were eligible for the child tax credit (CTC) experienced improved nutrition, decreased […]

SPI sessions at Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM)

Three Social Policy Institute researchers will present their papers and host discussions at the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM) conference on March 28-29, 2022. Below are the papers and discussions presented by the SPI team. 10:15 a.m. (CT) on Monday, March 28, 2022 “Precarious Homeownership and Housing Inequity During the COVID-19 Pandemic” […]

We Are All Data People: An Equity-Centered Approach to Increasing Impact

The launch of a series of free learning opportunities for increasing social sector impact, capacity and connection around data. About this event Social sector organizations can increase their impact and advance their missions by cultivating effective, ethical, and equitable data practices. Based on St. Louis social sector input, the Data Science for Social Impact initiative […]

Inclusive Growth in St. Louis Events

Who benefits from economic growth in St. Louis? Despite promises of job creation, increasing home values, new businesses, and representative leadership in St. Louis, the benefits of economic growth have not been equally, nor equitably, distributed. As the economy rebuilds itself from COVID-19 devastation, now is the time to consider how St. Louis can become […]

Apprenticeships increase employment, earnings, and optimism in the technology sector (Links to an external site)

Given the novel and rapidly changing nature of the labor market, learning new skills quickly will become an increasingly important aspect of workforce development and social mobility. The Social Policy Institute investigates LaunchCode, a St. Louis boot camp with an apprenticeship model, as a viable option to increase wealth-building opportunities and upskill a more diverse labor […]

Graduate Policy Scholars 2021-2022 cohort expands university reach

The Graduate Policy Scholars program kicked off its fifth year with a cohort spanning the Washington University in St. Louis campus. Fifty-seven students were invited to participate in this year’s program. While originally founded as a program for Brown School students, SPI has helped to expand the program across the university, with nearly 1/3 of […]

Roundtable Recap: Mapping Your Data Impact Journey

How can social sector organizations use data to increase their impact, and how can they ensure that impact will lead to equitable outcomes? These are guiding questions addressed in our roundtable series hosted by the Social Policy Institute’s Data Science for Social Impact initiative, which kicked off on October 20, 2021, and continues through November […]

Data Science for Social Impact Roundtable Series

The purpose of the Data Science for Social Impact (DSSI) public roundtable discussions is to gather feedback on prospective resources, tools and trainings, facilitate dialogue about key topics, and build connection and community while identifying St. Louis social sector priorities and considerations. Roundtable discussions welcome participants with a wide range of data experience, incorporate equitable […]

Resilience and Reinvention: Lessons from the Pandemic (Links to an external site)

This two-part forum will present exciting new research arising from ongoing international collaborations involving McDonnell Academy partner institutions. It will feature presentations by researchers from Washington University in St. Louis and their collaborators around the globe on the impacts and lessons of Covid-19.

Promoting Childhood Vaccination During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As schools start back up, many parents are concerned about the health effects of COVID-19 in children. However, childhood diseases beyond COVID-19 are still threats to children’s well-being. In the early stages of the pandemic, there was a large decrease in childhood vaccination rates for diseases such as diphtheria, pertussis, measles and mumps.

Apply to become a Graduate Policy Scholar!

Applications for the Graduate Policy Scholar program are now open to all graduate students at Washington University in St. Louis! The Graduate Policy Scholar program provides students from all fields of study with impactful opportunities and training in policy. Offered by the Social Policy Institute and the Clark-Fox Policy Institute, the yearlong program provides students […]