Saturday, November 10, 2012: 10:15 AM-11:45 AM
International C (Sheraton Baltimore City Center Hotel)
*Names in bold indicate Presenter
Organizers: Brian Jacob, University of Michigan
Moderators: Sarah Bruch, University of Iowa
Chairs: Susan E. Mayer, University of Chicago
The relatively high level of inter-generational transmission of poverty is among the most distressing features of the poverty problem in America. Social policy in the U.S. often prioritizes means-tested transfer programs for low-income families with children in part to mitigate the harmful effects of poverty on the immediate living conditions of poor children, but also with the hope that improving the material conditions of poor children will improve their long-term life chances. However the empirical evidence about whether means-tested transfers do indeed improve the life chances of poor children – that is, whether “money matters” – or what sort of targeted in-kind programs might matter more, remain unclear. This panel includes three new empirical papers that address this question, a session chair that authored a provocative book that helped overturn the conventional wisdom that transfer programs to poor children have large effects on children’s outcomes, and a discussant with extensive experience working at the interface of social science research and social policy who will be able to connect the specific empirical findings from the papers to the larger social-policy context.