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One argument for Small Area Fair Market Rents (SAFMRs) is that they would reduce overpayment for voucher units in low-rent neighborhoods. This article provides a more comprehensive theoretical analysis that leads to the conclusion that the worst voucher units and those in the worst neighborhoods will usually rent for more than the mean market rent of identical units, and the best units in the best neighborhoods will rent for less than this amount.

HSAs and savings incentives research

To lower health care costs, Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) offer tax incentives encouraging people to trade off current consumption against future consumption. This paper tests whether consumers use HSAs as self-insurance over the life cycle. 

Medicaid Spill Up Effects Tello-Trillo

Batten professor Sebastian Tello-Trillo shares new research suggesting that health insurance coverage for kids through Medicaid and CHIP helps their moms.

Alum in Action: Curbing the Global HIV/AIDS Epidemic Through Data

Aaron Chafetz (MPP ’13) is a senior economist in the Office of HIV/AIDS at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), where he has risen in the ranks over the past decade.

The number of women in the labor force is down more than 1 million since pre-pandemic days. Lack of affordable child care is one reason.

Batten alum Maureen Coffey (MPP '21), a policy analyst on the early childhood policy team at Center for American Progress, says that lack of affordable child care costs families, employers and the entire economy. In an op-ed for MarketWatch, Coffey and co-author Hailey Gibbs outline how a comprehensive national approach could solve the problem.

Medicaid Spill Up Effects

Sebastian Tello-Trillo, an assistant professor in the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy, explains the positive “spill-up” effect on parents of children covered by Medicaid.

Spill Up Effects Expansion Medicaid for Kids

New research shows that expansions in children’s Medicaid eligibility increases the likelihood a mother is married, decreases her labor market participation, and reduces her smoking and alcohol consumption.

Wage insurance provides income support to displaced workers who find reemployment at a lower wage. This group of scholars study the effects of the wage insurance provisions of the US Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program using administrative data from the state of Virginia. What they find suggests that wage insurance eligibility increases short-run employment probabilities and that wage insurance and TAA training may yield similar long-run effects on employment and earnings.

This article examines how the Affordable Care Act (ACA) would change financial resources for and transfers to the previously uninsured if they were to purchase coverage in the ACA insurance exchanges (marketplaces) in 2014. The results suggest that the law provides gains to some, relative to their spending in the pre-ACA period, particularly those in poor health and with very low incomes, but it also potentially imposes financial losses on many, again compared to their experience when uninsured.

Matthew J. Notowidigdo studies a broad set of topics in labor economics and health economics. In labor economics, his research has focused on understanding the causes and consequences of long-term unemployment and the economic effects of unemployment insurance over the business cycle. Notowidigdo’s research in health economics focuses on the effects of public health insurance on labor supply and the effects of income on health spending. He is currently working with several state governments on large-scale randomized experiments of existing social insurance programs.