Policy Brief Series (Hamilton Project)

Articles

No. 6, April

Labor Force to Lecture Hall: Postsecondary Policies in Response to Job Loss
Adults who go back to school-including the newly unemployed-typically do so to improve their prospects in the labor market. During economic downturns, this tendency is amplified: for example, from just before the onset of the Great Recession through...
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No. 3, April

Increasing College Completion with a Federal Higher Education Matching Grant
A college degree is increasingly necessary in today's economy. Federal policy makers have attempted to encourage college attendance and degree attainment through financial aid provided to students. However, this aid has generally been unsuccessful in...
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No. 4, April

A Risk-Sharing Proposal for Student Loans
A high-quality college degree remains one of the best economic investments a person can make. However, many students struggle with the cost of higher education, experience poor labor market outcomes, and have difficulty repaying their loans. For example,...
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No. 7, April

Improving College and Career Outcomes of Low-Performing High School Students
Many students are not completing postsecondary education or thriving in the labor market. Moreover, this lack of success often comes as an unfortunate surprise to students, whose high expectations for postsecondary achievement are belied by low completion...
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No. 2, March

The Next Generation of Transportation Policy
The existing system of fuel efficiency standards is incomplete in several respects. Changes in fuel economy standards affect only new vehicles, leaving the existing fleet unaffected. Even among new vehicles, gains in fuel efficiency have stalled in recent...
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No. 1, March

Protecting Urban Places and Populations from Rising Climate Risk
As global carbon dioxide concentrations increase, the United States faces intensified risk from heat, drought, and other natural disasters. The risk will vary by region, state, and even neighborhood, with urban areas facing exceptional risks and challenges....
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No. 5, 2016

Fiscal Policy Reconsidered
The lengthy Struggle to emerge from the Great Recession has led to a serious rethinking of a previous verdict: that the job of stabilization policy, with its goal of achieving full employment and low inflation, could and should be left exclusively to...
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No. 4, 2016

Strengthening Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
The Great Recession was the longest and by some measures the most severe economic downturn in the postwar period. Incomes declined, poverty increased, and participation in government assistance through unemployment insurance (UI) benefits and food assistance...
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No. 2, 2016

Improving Academic Outcomes for Disadvantaged Students: Scaling Up Individualized Tutorials
Improving the educational outcomes of economically disadvantaged children is a policy priority in the United States, and yet relatively little progress has been made in recent decades. Some observers have come to believe that the effects of poverty make...
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No. 1, 2016

Increasing Targeting, Flexibility, and Transparency in Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to Help Disadvantaged Students
Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965 is the U.S. Department of Education's (ED's) largest program, providing funding to school districts that have high concentrations of child poverty. In a new Hamilton Project policy...
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No. 10, December

A Proposal for Modernizing Labor Laws for Twenty-First-Century Work: The "Independent Worker"
New and emerging types of work relationships in the online gig economy have raised new questions as to whether online gig workers meet the legal definition of "employee." Online gig workers provide on-demand services to customers to whom they are matched...
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No. 8, October

Getting the Most from Marketplaces: Smart Policies on Health Insurance Choice
The most significant recent reforms to the U.S. health-care system-the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010 and the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003-rely heavily on private provision of health...
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No. 6, June

Strengthening Risk Protection through Private Long-Term Care Insurance
Chapter 1. IntroductionThe largest out-of-pocket spending risk for elderly households is the expense of care and assistance in the event of cognitive or physical impairment. A 65-year-old couple can expect to spend $65,000 on long-term services and supports...
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No. 5, June

Building on What Works: A Proposal to Modernize Retirement Savings
NOTE: This discussion paper is a proposal from the author(s). As emphasized in The Hamilton Project's original strategy paper, the Project was designed in part to provide a forum for leading thinkers across the nation to put forward innovative and potentially...
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No. 4, May

Financing U.S. Transportation Infrastructure in the 21st Century
The economy of the United States depends on our nation's system of transportation infrastructure. Every day, billions of dollars' worth of freight is transported using the nation's roads, railroads, airports, seaports, and inland waterways. Tens of millions...
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No. 2, March

Strengthening Reemployment in the Unemployment Insurance System
Helping unemployed workers find reemployment has long been a policy challenge in the United States, and the urgency of the problem tends to increase during and after economic downturns. During the recent Great Recession, unemployment shot up to 10 percent...
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No. 3, March

Minority and Women Entrepreneurs: Building Capital, Networks, and Skills
Minority and Women Entrepreneurs: Building Capital, Networks, and SkillsAmericas small businesses drive job creation and form a foundational part of our country's dynamic economy. Small businesses can empower their owners, offering a source of income,...
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No. 1, January

Reforming Occupational Licensing Policies
Occupational licensing is the process by which governments establish qualifications to practice a trade or profession, so that only licensed practitioners are allowed by law to receive pay for doing work in that occupation. This form of regulation has...
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No. 6, October

The Path to Water Innovation
The U.S. economy depends on a well-functioning water infrastructure. America's water systems support 55 million acres of irrigated farmland, 315 million domestic users of water, and a $16 trillion national economy. Commercial industries ranging from...
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No. 5, October

Shopping for Water: How the Market Can Mitigate Water Shortages in the American West
For the past fifteen years the American West has experienced a widespread and severe drought that has strained water-supply systems. This prolonged drought has exposed substantial deficiencies in our nation's approach to water management, leading to...
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No. 4, September

Tomorrow's Catch: A Proposal to Strengthen the Economic Sustainability of U.S. Fisheries
Wild fisheries in U.S. waters make an important contribution to the nation's economy, our coastal heritage, and to consumers. But their economic sustainability is not guaranteed and current practices do not capitalize on their full economic potential....
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No. 3, May

A New Approach to Reducing Incarceration While Maintaining Low Rates of Crime
The U.S. incarceration rate today exceeds both its own historical norms and the rates of all other developed countries. The current U.S. incarceration rate is roughly three times its rate in 1980, and six times the rate of a typical developed country....
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No. 2, May

Think before You Act: A New Approach to Preventing Youth Violence and Dropout
Improving the long-term life outcomes of disadvantaged youths has long been a policy priority in the United United States. Economically disadvantaged youths are more likely to drop out of high school, become teen parents, and engage in criminal behavior...
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No. 1, March

Unlocking Spectrum Value through Improved Allocation, Assignment, and Adjudication of Spectrum Rights
Unlocking Spectrum Value through Improved Allocation, Assignment, and Adjudication of Spectrum RightsWireless devices -providing services from mobile communications to TV to air traffic control-use electromagnetic signals in the radio frequency range....
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No. 6, December

Strengthening SNAP for a More Food-Secure, Healthy America
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, is designed to supplement families' cash resources so they can purchase an adequate and nutritional diet.SNAP, the largest antihunger program in the United...
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No. 7, December

Giving Secondary Earners a Tax Break: A Proposal to Help Lowand Middle-Income Families
Declining real wages for individuals with limited skills and education means that the economic security of lowand middle-income families has eroded in recent decades. Roughly two-thirds of married families with children rely on the income from two workers...
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No. 5, October

Loans for Educational Opportunity: Making Borrowing Work for Today's Students
Borrowing for college has risen steadily for decades and student-loan debt has mounted to $1 trillion, now surpassing credit cards as the third-largest form of consumer debt. With 7 million student loans in default and rising tuition prices, some are...
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No. 4, October

Redesigning the Pell Grant Program for the Twenty-First Century
The Pell Grant program, authorized by the Higher Education Act of 1965, is the largest source of federal grant aid for postsecondary education. Over the forty years since the Pell Grant program was introduced, it has expanded dramatically in both size...
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No. 3, June

Informing Students about Their College Options: A Proposal for Broadening the Expanding College Opportunities Project
The vast majority of high-achieving, low-income students do not apply to selective colleges or universities. This stands in sharp contrast to their higher-income peers. This gap represents a troubling loss of opportunity for the students themselves,...
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April

Using Data to Improve the Performance of Workforce Training
Workforce training programs have the potential to increase the incomes of American workers, lifting low-income workers into the middle class and preventing others from falling out of it. Despite the promise of training programs, however, too many workers...
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No. 5, February

Making Defense Affordable
The U.S. military is the strongest in the world.It is also the most costly; currently, the U.S. defense establishment outspends any other country's military by a factor of about six to one. In the face of mounting fiscal pressures, it is necessary to...
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No. 1, February

National Defense in a Time of Change
NOTE: This discussion paper is a proposal from the authors. As emphasized in The Hamilton Project's original strategy paper, the Project was designed in part to provide a forum for leading thinkers across the nation to put forward innovative and potentially...
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No. 5, September

Harnessing Technology to Improve K-12 Education
Innovation has spurred great increases in productivity in many sectors of the American economy, reducing costs and improving quality. In the American educational system however, policymakers, parents, teachers and other stakeholders are concerned that...
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No. 6, September

Learning from the Successes and Failures of Charter Schools
As U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said in 2009, "There are approximately 5,000 [chronically underperforming] schools...roughly 5 percent of the total. About half are in big cities, maybe a third are in rural areas, and the rest are in suburbs...
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No. 7, September

Staying in School: A Proposal to Raise High School Graduation Rates
High School dropouts face daunting challenges for the rest of their lives. In recent decades, education attainment has slowed while Americans without high school diplomas have fallen farther behind high school and college graduates, experiencing wage...
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No. 4, June

A Strategy for U.S. Natural Gas Exports
A Strategy for U.S. Natural Gas ExportsU.S. natural gas production is booming. New technologies now allow access to natural gas that had been impossible for producers to extract economically only a few years ago. As a result, domestic natural gas prices...
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No. 2, June

Modernizing Bonding Requirements for Natural Gas Producers
Hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") and other recent advances in extraction technologies have dramatically increased the availability of natural gas and offer potentially tremendous benefits to the U.S. economy. However, these technical advances also pose...
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No. 3, June

Leveling the Playing Field for Natural Gas in Transportation
Petroleum has long dominated the u.s. transportation sector, but growing concerns about U.S. energy security and the environmental effects of oil have increased pressures to find alternative energy sources. Newly available domestic supplies of cheap...
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No. 1, May

Rationalizing U.S. Immigration Policy: Reforms for Simplicity, Fairness, and Economic Growth
The current system of immigration in the United States is a complicated composite of policies and reforms implemented at various times in our history to accomplish varying goals. Dozens of overlapping visa categories-each with different quotas, costs,...
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No. 11, November

Policies to Reduce High-Tenured Displaced Workers' Earnings Losses through Retraining
Major shifts in U.S. employment have led to the widespread loss of high-paying jobs in manufacturing and other industries. Recovering from these losses has been particularly difficult for high-tenured workers who lack a college education or vocational...
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No. 10, November

Raising Job Quality and Skills for American Workers: Creating More-Effective Education and Workforce Development Systems in the States
The wage and employment opportunities of lesseducated and less-skilled Americans have been declining for several decades, and the recent recession has exacerbated this trend. These workers have slipped through cracks in the formal education system and...
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No. 9, September

New Assessments for Improved Accountability
Over the past decade, educational reforms have increased efforts to hold teachers and schools accountable for student test scores. Schools without significant progress on test scores have been subject to reductions in funding and even replacement of...
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No. 8, September

Organizing Schools to Improve Student Achievement: Start Times, Grade Configurations, and Teacher Assignments
Proposals for school reform often focus on large and sometimes controversial systemic changes, such as charter schools, accountability standards, and changes to the way teachers are hired, fired, and compensated. Although these reforms may offer great...
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No. 7, September

The Power and Pitfalls of Education Incentives
Parents may reward kids with an extra allowance or ice cream if they do their homework or spend a specified amount of time reading. Classroom teachers may offer gold stars for high test grades or good behavior. For many children, incentives already play...
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No. 4, May

Promoting Clean Energy in the American Power Sector
The difficulty of securing bipartisan agreement on a comprehensive national energy and climate change policy points to the need for an incremental approach rather than continued inaction. In his Hamilton Project discussion paper, Joseph Aldy of the Harvard...
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No. 6, May

A Better Approach to Environmental Regulation: Getting the Costs and Benefits Right
Regulation is critical to good environmental policy because it corrects market failures that can jeopardize the health and safety of American families. Nevertheless, it is usually not easy to determine which regulations will or will not be effective....
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No. 5, May

An Energy Technology Corporation Will Improve the Federal Government's Efforts to Accelerate Energy Innovation
An Energy Technology Corporation Will Improve the Federal Government's Efforts to Accelerate Energy InnovationInnovation is critical to solving many of the energy and environmental challenges we face today, from reducing carbon dioxide emissions to lowering...
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No. 2, February

Public-Private Partnerships to Revamp U.S. Infrastructure
In the Wake of the Great Recession, state and local governments, facing severe budget constraints, are searching for new, more efficient ways to finance and build infrastructure projects. Public-private partnerships are a particularly appealing option....
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No. 3, February

Fix It First, Expand It Second, Reward It Third: A New Strategy for America's Highways
Bridges, roads, and other transportation infrastructure are crucial for facilitating trade within, between, and across states. The development and expansion of the National Highway System has facilitated trade and linked markets: markets that were once...
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No. 1, February

Lowering Borrowing Costs for States and Municipalities through CommonMuni
State and municipal governments borrow in the municipal bond market to finance local infrastructure projects that have large up-front costs and long-term benefits such as schools, roads, and hospitals. All sizes and levels of government-from the largest...
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October

Retraining Displaced Workers
For Workers displaced in mass layoffs and plant closings, the consequences of being laid off usually extend far beyond the period when they are unemployed. When they do find new jobs, they face substantial and highly persistent declines in their earnings....
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The Mobility Bank: Increasing Residential Mobility to Boost Economic Mobility
POLICY BRIEF OCTOBER 2010In August 2010y the unemployment rate in the Flint, Michigan, metropolitan area was 23.6 percent, well above the national average of 9.6 percent. Other cities around the country have been hit similarly hard and have had unemployment...
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Bringing Jobs to People: How Federal Policy Can Target Job Creation for Economically Distressed Areas
In 2006, well before the recession began, the U.S. unemployment rate was 4.6 percent. At the same time, fifty metropolitan areas had unemployment rates of 6 percent or higher, and eleven had unemployment rates of 8 percent or higher. The recession exacerbated...
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No. 2009-1, April

Strengthening One-Stop Career Centers: Helping More Unemployed Workers Find Jobs and Build Skills
WITH THE NATIONAL UNEMPLOYMENT RATE RISING RAPIDLY, a key question facing state and federal governments is how best to help workers who have lost their jobs. One-Stop Career Centers (One-Stops), first established in the 1 98Os, may prove critical in...
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No. 15, December

A U.S. Innovation Strategy for Climate Change Mitigation
IN THE YEARS AHEAD, the United States will need to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to help mitigate global climate change. Technological advances in energy efficiency and clean energy sources will be crucial to meeting emissions targets, yet the...
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No. 17, December

Improving the Measurement of Poverty
IN THE MID-1960s the Johnson administration adopted a national measure of poverty during the War on Poverty. More than four decades later, we continue to use essentially the same measure to define poverty even though that measure has lost much of its...
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No. 12, September

Facilitating Shared Appreciation Mortgages to Prevent Housing Crashes and Affordability Crises
SINCE 2007, the subprime mortgage crisis has rattled the lives and financial futures of millions of households who have become de- linquent on their mortgages or whose homes have been foreclosed upon. The credit crunch is now making it more difficult...
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No. 13, September

Getting More from Low-Income Housing Assistance
HOUSING SUBSIDIES CONSTITUTE ONE OF THE LARGEST PARTS of government support for low-income peo- ple, easily outpacing high-profile programs such as food stamps and temporary assistance to needy families. In total, federal, state, and local governments...
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No. 14, September

An Opt-Out Home Mortgage System
THE CURRENT HOUSING CRISIS has roiled financial markets and caused tremendous hardship for families. Millions have lost their homes, are experiencing financial strain to stay in their homes, or are finding it harder to purchase new homes. Driven initially...
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No. 5, July

America's Traffic Congestion Problem: A Proposal for Nationwide Reform
IN THE UNITED STATES, THE FIRST COUNTRY TO PRO- DUCE CARS FOR MASS CONSUMPTION, we have long valued the freedom to drive wherever we want, whenever we want. But we have reached the point where the traffic we generate is creating too many costs for society...
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No. 4, July

Taking Massachusetts National: An Incremental Approach to Universal Health Insurance
UNTIL THE RECENT FOCUS ON HEALTH CARE in the presidential primaries, the debate over universal health insurance in the past decade had taken place largely at the state level. In the absence of national action, states considered acting themselves, and...
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No. 7, July

Air Support: Creating a Safer and More Reliable Air Traffic Control System
ANYONE WHO HAS FLOWN IN THE PAST FEW YEARS for business or leisure understands the cost of flight delays: un- pleasant hours on planes and in airports, lost time with family, and missed meetings and connections. In 2007, 24 percent of domestic flights...
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No. 8, July

Bringing Broadband to Unserved Communities
THE "DIGITAL DIVIDE" HAS BECOME A FAMILIAR BUZZ PHRASE of the computer age, commonly used to distinguish the wealthy, who can afford Internet access, from the poor, who often can- not. But there are other digital divides as well, in particular the one...
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No. 9, July

The Untapped Promise of Wireless Spectrum
WIRELESS SPECTRUM - the airwaves used for wireless communi- cation - facilitates such advances in technology as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Smartphones like the iPhone.The value of the resource was highlighted in early 2008 when the Federal Communications...
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No. 6, July

Pay-as-You-Drive Auto Insurance: A Simple Way to Reduce Driving-Related Harms and Increase Equity
WHEN YOU DINE AT AN ALL- YOU-CAN-EAT RESTAURANT, chances are that you eat more than you would if you paid à la carte. If gasoline were priced on an all-you-can-drive basis, you also would probably drive more. All-you-can-drive pricing may seem absurd,...
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No. 3, June

Financing Losses from Catastrophic Risks
THE TERRORIST AT TACKS OF SEPTEMBER 11th and Hurricane Katrina together claimed over 4,000 lives and destroyed parts of New York, Washington, and Louisiana. Beyond the human toll, they also created large financial losses borne by families, businesses,...
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No. 1, June

Stabilizing State and Local Budgets: A Proposal for Tax-Base Insurance
WHEN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT SUFFERS a tem- porary economic downturn that reduces tax revenue, the optimal response is generally to finance temporarily higher deficits with borrowing. When states and localities suffer a temporary shock, however, they...
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No. 2, June

Increasing Annuitization in 401(k) Plans with Automatic Trial Income
MANYMEMBERS of the baby boom generation, the eldest of whom have begun taking early retirement, will have the resources to live com- fortably to the age of seventy, seventy-five, or even eighty. But even that may not be enough; a woman who is sixty-five...
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No. 14, December

Employment-Based Tax Credits for Low-Skilled Workers
FAMILIES IN LOW-INCOME COMMUNITIES FACE three interrelated problems: unemployment rates are high, incarceration rates of low-skilled men are high, and a large fraction of children in low-income communities are being raised in single-parent households....
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No. 16, December

New Hope: Fulfilling America's Promise to "Make Work Pay"
MILLIONS OF LOW-INCOME AMERICANS work fall- time but still live in poverty. And many more can't find work at all. In a discussion paper for The Hamilton Project, Hans Bos, Greg Duncan, Lisa Gennetian, and Heather D. Hill propose a national program to...
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No. 15, December

Better Workers for Better Jobs: Improving Worker Advancement in the Low-Wage Labor Market
LOW- WAGE WORKERS in the United States are falling further and further behind their higher-earning counterparts. In response to the growing problem of wage inequality, many promising state and local initiatives have emerged to offer much- needed training,...
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No. 12, October

A Carbon Tax Swap to Mitigate Global Climate Change
CONTROVERSIAL UNTIL RECENTLY, the proposition that human activity is altering the climate at an unprecedented rate is now widely accepted. Global annual temperatures are rising more rapidly as greenhouse gas emissions from human activity-most notably...
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No. 13, October

A U.S. Cap-and-Trade System to Address Global Climate Change
IN JUST A FEW SHORT YEARS, mounting scientific evidence has transformed Americans' perception of climate change. The proposition that human activity is contributing to the climate problem has gained consensus across the nation, from environmental scientists,...
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No. 11, July

A Comprehensive Cure: Universal Health Care Vouchers
THE FUNDAMENTAL STRUCTURES of the U.S. health care system are increasingly unsustainable. The growth of health care spending exceeds GDP growth by an average of 2.5 percentage points annually and tens of millions of Americans are uninsured or underinsured....
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No. 10, July

Achieving Universal Coverage through Medicare Part E(veryone)
WHILE INNOVATION has led to an expanded choice of technologies, drugs, and services in the American health care marketplace, it has come with a price. Those fortunate enough to have health insurance can receive very good health care, but those excluded...
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No. 9, June

Rehabilitating the Business Income Tax
THE AMERICAN SYSTEM for taxing business income is broken. Business tax laws and regulations are tremendously complicated, lead to inefficient choices by business leaders and investors, and raise much less revenue than might be expected given statutory...
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No. 7, June

Taxing Privilege More Effectively: Replacing the Estate Tax with an Inheritance Tax
THE ESTATE TAX, a fixture of the federal tax system for more than ninety years, is set for repeal under a 2001 law, hut in a bizarre way: it will disappear in 2010, only to return one year later with a different rate structure. This situation creates...
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No. 8, June

Reforming Corporate Taxation in a Global Economy: A Proposal to Adopt Formulary Apportionment
DESPITE A GLOBAL ECONOMY that is far more complex and integrated than it has ever been, the U.S. system of corporate income taxation remains based on outdated geographic concepts. Firms must account separately for income and expenses in each country...
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No. 6, May

Evolving beyond Traditional Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance
HEALTH CARE RECONSIDEREDOptions For ChangeOne of four approaches to achieving universal coverage released by The Hamilton ProjectTODAY'S EMPLOYER-BASED health insurance system has created two very different worlds. In one, long-serving employees of generally...
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No. 3, April

Mending the Medicare Prescription Drug Benefit: Improving Consumer Choice and Restructuring Purchasing
PRESCRIPTION DRUGS play a central role in managing chronic illness and other health problems facing the elderly. Until recently, however, Medicare provided no insurance for most outpatient prescription drugs. Many elderly Americans, facing large out-of-pocket...
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No. 4, April

A Wellness Trust to Prioritize Disease Prevention
CHRONIC AND PREVENTABLE DISEASES are a growing challenge confronting the United States. They currently account for most deaths and costs in the health-care system, despite the relatively low-cost and low-tech services that could limit them. Disease prevention...
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No. 5, April

The Promise of Progressive Cost Consciousness in Health-Care Reform
AS HEALTH-CARE SPENDING RISES, more families are uninsured, in peril of losing their insurance, or have insurance policies that leave them exposed to unlimited out-of-pocket expenses. Although families ultimately pay for all their health-care costs,...
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No. 1, February

College Grants on a Postcard: A Proposal for Simple and Predictable Federal Student Aid
EACH YEAR, in an effort to increase college attendance, the federal government provides college aid worth approximately $16 billion through Pell grants and the Hope and Lifetime Learning tax credits. The idea behind this aid is straightforward: more...
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No. 2, February

Success by Ten: Intervening Early, Often, and Effectively in the Education of Young Children
DURING THE FIRST FEW YEARS OF LIFE, a child's brain grows astonishingly quickly; children's brains have a unique "plasticity," making the very young unusually responsive to environmental influences. Unfortunately, the environments that children experience...
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No. 8, December

Prizes for Technological Innovation
IN 1919, NEW YORK HOTEL OWNER Raymond Orteig offered a $25,000 prize for the first nonstop aircraft flight between New York and Paris. The conventional wisdom of the day suggested that the winning craft would be a heavy, multiengine airplane with a large...
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No. 10, December

Aligning Patent Presumptions with the Reality of Patent Review: A Proposal for Patent Reform
THE GRANTING of intellectual properly rights, most notably through patents, helps spur innovation by providing potential inventors with the right incentives, making them secure in the knowledge that they can reap the benefits of their creations. Numerous...
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No. 9, December

Investing in the Best and Brightest: Increased Fellowship Support for American Scientists and Engineers
THE UNITED STATES has long been the global leader in science and technology, and our ability to advance the scientific frontier has been a substantial source of our economic growth. In recent years, however, American dominance in science has dimmed as...
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No. 6, September

Reforming Unemployment Insurance for the Twenty-First Century Workforce
THE U.S. ECONOMY AND ITS WORKFORCE have changed dramatically since the Federal-State Unemployment Compensation Program, commonly known as unemployment insurance (UI), was created in 1935. Structural changes in the economy-including a shift from manufacturing...
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No. 7, September

Universal Insurance: Enhancing Economic Security to Promote Opportunity
THE ECONOMIC RISKS FACED BY AMERICAN FAMILIES have increased dramatically over the past three decades: Middle-class families in the 1970s could expect annual income swings averaging about 15 percent; by the end of the 1990s, average annual income swings...
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No. 5, September

Fundamental Restructuring of Unemployment Insurance
THE INNOVATION, COMPETITION, AND SHIFTS in business practices that fuel the dynamism of the American economy also create a turbulent labor market with substantial turnover. On an average day in 2005, for example, about 3.7 million people who had lost...
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No. 4, July

The Simple Return: Reducing America's Tax Burden through Return-Free Filing
THE BURDEN OF AN INCOME TAX can be divided into two parts, one visible and the other hidden. The first burden is obvious-it is the actual tax payment. The second burden is less obvious. A major part of this burden arises from the costs of complying with...
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No. 1, April

Identifying Effective Teachers Using Performance on the Job
Public education ultimately succeeds or fails based on the talent and skills of America's 3.1 million teachers in elementary and secondary schools. Everything else-educational standards, testing, school buildings, and school and district leadership-is...
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No. 2, April

Improving Opportunities and Incentives for Saving by Middle- and Low-Income Households
Many Americans leave the workforce in their midsixties facing extended retirement, but with few financial resources. Social Security-the primary federal income support program for the elderly-was never intended to provide full retirement income, and...
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No. 3, April

Summer Opportunity Scholarships: Narrowing the Skills Gap
STUDENTS' BASIC READING AND MATH SKILLS atrophy during summer vacation by as much as one-third of a school year of learning. Summer learning loss does not affect all students equally, however. Students from low socioeconomic backgrounds see a much sharper...
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