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Poverty Solutions at the University of Michigan

Joan and Sanford Weill hall
Suite 5100
735 South State Street
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-3091

Research

Faculty Grant Program to Prevent and Alleviate Poverty

This is an open grant funding opportunity for faculty at University of Michigan Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses to pursue research projects focused on strategies to address poverty with effective, real-world solutions. Proposals are reviewed on a rolling basis.

Faculty Request for Proposals (PDF)

2020 Poverty Solutions Faculty Grants

  • Addressing the Need and Identifying the Root Causes of the Intersection of Food and Transportation Insecurity: The City of Detroit Food Delivery Program (Re)Design The COVID-19 pandemic is creating conditions in Detroit and across the country that have led to novel cases of need at the intersection of food and transportation insecurity. In response, the City of Detroit’s Parks & Recreation Division and Innovation Team, in partnership with Gleaners, United Way of Southeastern Michigan, Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency,…
  • Benefit Coach Pilot There are two interrelated challenges facing health and human services professionals. First, a relatively large percentage of poor families do not receive the public benefits for which they qualify. Second, young children associated with substantiated allegations of neglect are at a high risk for experiencing a subsequent substantiated incident of neglect. These problems are interrelated…
  • Democracy's Denominator: How Citizenship-based Redistricting Impacts Racial Minority Voters For the past half century, congressional and state legislative districts in the U.S. have been drawn to equalize the total population of each district. But recently, legislators in several states with Republican-controlled legislatures have hinted at potentially changing the unit of apportionment to eligible citizen voters. This new approach has been empowered by the Trump…
  • Disparate Distress:  An Oversample of African Americans and Latinos in the United States for "People and Pandemics: Studying International Coping and Compliance" The COVID-19 pandemic has been especially damaging to communities of color in the United States. Disproportionate rates of illness and death have combined with higher rates of unemployment, precarious access to medical care, and overburdened supportive services to intensify the impact on Black and Latino individuals, families, and neighborhoods.  An especially important case is Puerto…
  • Evaluating violence-reduction and summer youth employment programs This grant will allow Sara Heller, an assistant professor of economics at U-M, to expand on three current research projects that can provide evidence to guide the development of effective interventions aimed at low-income youth.  Evaluation of Philadelphia WorkReady: Heller ran a randomized controlled trial of Philadelphia’s youth summer job program, called WorkReady, in the…
  • Potential health gains from income and wealth tax proposals in the U.S. Presidential candidates in the 2020 election have made income inequality a major issue. While many candidates have introduced comprehensive tax policies, there has been little research done to understand the impact of income gains from various tax policy proposals on long-term health outcomes. This study is designed to collate evidence around the link between income…
  • Program on Equity In Child Health (PECH) at Mott Hospital This project aims to examine the potential for inequity resulting from variation in the actual care provided by clinicians and hospital personnel to children and their families. Considerable research demonstrates differences by gender, income, race and ethnicity in the way adult patients are provided care across numerous conditions (e.g., heart attacks, treatment for pain, diagnostic…
  • Systems and structures of poverty - the profit of debt Household debt has been on the rise in the U.S. for the past three decades. These debts accrue in a variety of ways from attempting to climb the ladder of opportunity (student loans), seeking stability for one’s family (housing), making ends meet when money is tight (credit cards), getting sick or injured (healthcare), traveling to…
  • The Effect of COVID-19 on Food Insecurity in the United States The COVID-19 pandemic and the societal changes it has prompted in the United States are profoundly and quickly changing American life. This survey research study we will field an online survey to measure the effect of the COVID-19 outbreak on food insecurity in the United States. Wave one of the survey of low-income adults (which…
  • Time dollars as alternative currency to address transportation scarcity within Detroit’s low-income communities People living in poverty have limited access to financial resources that permits economic exchange. In turn, this limits formal economic participation. Prior research has shown that alternative, local currency systems, used alongside national currency systems (like USD), can enhance local economies by helping people experiencing poverty initiate or participate in economically productive activities. In the…
  • Understanding How Poverty Affects Water Affordability in Detroit Water affordability and access in the City of Detroit is a growing concern for city officials, area residents, and community groups working in the city. In this project, the researcher will work with the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD), Office of Sustainability, and the Detroit Health Department (DHD) to examine how the broader context…
  • Using Police Body Camera Footage to Experimentally Assess the Effects of Routine Police Encounters for Community Trust and Community Health Racial inequities in American policing are at the forefront of public consciousness in 2020. This research project will evaluate the physiological stress Black and white people experience during routine traffic stops, offering insights on the relationship between policing and minority health. Study participants will listen to audio recordings of actual traffic stops, as recorded by…
  • Valuing the Costs and Benefits of Free Mobile Care for Pregnant Mothers and Infants Access to prenatal and newborn care are critical components to improve birth outcomes and reduce infant deaths. Despite Medicaid expansion, many families in Michigan lack health insurance and access to care. Such families often face overwhelming barriers to care including limited or no transportation, poverty, childcare, competing demands, and work schedules. Since 2016, the Luke…
  • Washtenaw County Prosecutor's Office: Racial Equity Study and Criminal Justice Dashboard Poverty Solutions is partnering with the Washtenaw County Prosecutor’s Office and others on a data-driven project focused on uncovering potential inequities within the prosecutorial system and increasing the transparency and accountability of the system generally. The “Prosecutor Transparency Project” in partnership with the ACLU of Michigan and the University of Michigan Law School has two…
  • Youth Voice in Poverty Solutions Young people should participate in institutions and decisions that affect their lives, but youth are not usually involved when adults make anti-poverty policy decisions. The purpose of the project is to amplify the voices of young people in community-based strategies against poverty. Groups affiliated with the Summer Youth Dialogues on Race and Ethnicity in Metropolitan…
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