The Poverty Lab partners with civic and community leaders to identify, rigorously evaluate, and help scale programs and policies that reduce poverty and create paths to economic opportunity.
Cities fuel remarkable economic and cultural opportunity, but can also amplify dire social problems such as unemployment, financial instability, and homelessness. Many cities are working to tackle these challenges, yet there is still too little evidence about what works, what is sustainable, and how to leverage scarce resources.
Our data-driven approach addresses this lack of evidence, to help ensure that every public and philanthropic dollar makes a quantifiable difference in the lives of our nation’s most vulnerable.
The Poverty Lab brings together the power of big data and strategic partnerships with government agencies and nonprofits. We are working with cities and foundations to strengthen workforce development efforts for the long-term unemployed and help connect low-income parents to resources that can benefit their children. Using government data in novel ways and linking data across domains, we also seek to help cities harness their own data resources to better address pressing issues such as housing instability.
By focusing on quantifiable results, the Poverty Lab is working to inform policy and improve human lives.
Nothing stops a bullet like a job: Chicago summer jobs program reduces violent arrests by 43%
The Crime Lab and the Poverty Lab are working together to evaluate a program that engages recently incarcerated youth in full-time work in playwriting and theatre
The Crime Lab and the Poverty Lab are partnering with the Dovetail Project and Chicago Beyond to evaluate the impact of providing fathers with job skills and parenting support
Poverty Lab staff partner with civic and community leaders to generate evidence on what works to reduce poverty and create paths to economic opportunity.