Housing is a vital component for a healthy and thriving life. However, due to the high cost of housing, not all people have a decent home in a suitable living environment. For individuals, housing can make up a large proportion of their incomes. For society, housing costs do not stand alone but closely interact with its environment, including its neighborhood as well as the market system and policy.
SPI’s Housing Initiatives views housing issues as societal, and it is a key component to understand broad socioeconomic phenomena and their policy implications. By evaluating housing as both an explanatory factor and an outcome, we explore how housing affects and is affected by various social issues. Recent research topics include the long-lasting housing market inequity and systematic discrimination in the housing market, economic downturns, natural disasters, and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We explore diverse housing issues from varying scopes and methods. Our rich data assets encompass varying regional scopes, from a local neighborhood to a metropolitan area, and even include global perspectives. SPI’s research capacity and network enable us to view housing issues from diverse perspectives with collaborators from various academic backgrounds and global training. We also adopt varying empirical methods and methodologies, including qualitative approaches, in addition to our quantitative approaches such as econometrics and spatial models.
Our Housing Initiatives
Evaluating Impact of Choice Neighborhood Initiative
This explores (1) how USI’s services are developed and measured, (2) how USI’s services are implemented in a variety of contexts, and (3) what the impact of USI’s services are on families’ economic mobility, education, and health outcomes.
SPI’s Housing Initiatives include evaluations of both place-based and mobility-focused housing interventions executed by local and national non-profit organizations.
Research Response to COVID-19
Socioeconomic Impact of COVID-19 Survey
COVID-19 has dramatically shifted the world, and applying lessons learned during the pandemic will be critical as we not only rebuild our economy, but make it more equitable, too.
Abstract Stable and adequate housing is critical to sound public health responses in the midst of a pandemic. This study explores the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on housing-related hardships across racial/ethnic groups in the USA as well as the extent to which these disparities are mediated by households’ broader economic circumstances, which we […]
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 […]