The Center for Poverty Research at UC Davis is one of three
federally designated centers whose mission is to facilitate
non-partisan academic research on poverty in the
U.S., disseminate this research, and train the next
generation of poverty scholars. Our research agenda
includes four themed areas of focus: labor markets and poverty,
children and intergenerational transmission of poverty, the
non-traditional safety net, and immigration.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention produce data on
health and healthcare in the United States. Their annual
statistical yearbook, Health, United States includes a variety of
tables with breakdowns by poverty status.
In 2011, their data for children under
18 with “no usual source of
4.7% of all children had
no usual source of healthcare; for
poor children the rate was
The U.S.D.A.’s Economic Research Service monitors the extent and
severity of food insecurity in U.S. households through a
supplement to the Current Population Survey. Responses to a
series of 18 questions are used to determine whether a household
is food insecure.
According to data from the Census Bureau, in 2012 47.3
million people under age 65 (18%) had no health insurance; 9%
of all children were uninsured and those ages 19-34
were least likely to be insured (27% uninsured).
While 8.9% of all children were
uninsured, the rate for
children in poverty was
12.9% as compared to 7.7%
of children not in poverty.
In 2012, 75.3 million workers (or 59% of all wage and salary
workers) in the United States age 16 and over were paid hourly
Among those 1.6 million workers earned
exactly the prevailing federal minimum
wage of $7.25 per hour. Another 2
million had wages below the federal
minimum. Together these workers make up
4.7% of all hourly paid workers.
The Center for Poverty Research at UC Davis seeks applications
from graduate students who are interested in visiting the
Center in order to expand their understanding of the causes and
consequences of poverty. The Center anticipates hosting up to
four graduate students during fall quarter 2014.
We seek applications from Ph.D. students in a variety of
disciplines, including economics, psychology, sociology, social
work, public policy and graduate schools of law and education,
with research interests in our core research areas:
In November 2013, the Center hosted the conference “The
Affordable Care Act & Low Income Populations: Lessons from
and Challenges for Research.”
This conference brought together a unique mix of researchers,
policy professionals and industry leaders to discuss what the new
law means for health care in this country, as well as its
possible impacts on domestic poverty.
In these pages, we have gathered conference presentations with
existing and new Center materials on U.S. health care including:
Audio recordings of conference presentations and panels, as
well as slides
Policy briefs on health care
Facts and figures, as well as links to outside sources, that
provide a clearer picture of health care in the U.S.
New articles that explore issues brought up during the
Central to our mission is the dissemination of poverty research.
We hope you will consider these pages a useful, ongoing resource
as we continue to add new work and research on health care in the
Dr. Chris Benner is an Associate Professor of Community and
Regional Development, and Chair of the Geography Graduate Group
at the University of California, Davis. His research
focuses on the relationships between technological change,
regional development, and the structure of economic opportunity,
focusing on regional labor markets and the transformation of work
and employment patterns.
Ann Huff Stevens is Director of the Center for Poverty Research
at UC Davis and Professor and Chair of the Department of
Economics. She studies low income workers and labor markets, the
incidence and effects of job loss, connections between economic
shocks and health, and poverty and safety-net dynamics.
1153 Social Sciences & Humanities Building
Gail Goodman received her degree in Developmental Psychology from
UCLA in 1977. Her areas of research expertise include welfare
recipients, foster care, and the intergenerational transmission
of attachment insecurity.
Leticia Saucedo received her degree, cum laude, from
Harvard Law School in 1996. Her research centers on employment
and immigration law, immigrants in low-wage workplaces and the
structural dynamics affecting their entry.
Lisa Pruitt’s areas of research include legal and policy
implications of income inequality along the rural-urban continuum
and legal aspects of declining mobility, with an emphasis on
diminishing access to higher education.
Michal Kurlaender’s work focuses on education policy and
evaluation, particularly practices that address existing
racial/ethnic and socioeconomic inequality at various stages of
the educational attainment process.
Ross A. Thompson’s research focuses on the applications of
developmental research to public policy concerns, including
school readiness and its development, early childhood
investments, and early mental health.
Dina Okamoto received her degree in Sociology from the University
of Arizona in 2001. Her poverty related research focuses on
interviews and ethnographic studies of low-income immigrant
families and their adaptation to life in the U.S.
2264 Social Sciences & Humanities Building
Kimberlee Shauman received her degree in Sociology, Population
Demography and Ecology from the University of Michigan in 1997.
Her areas of expertise include social stratification, family and
kinship, demography, sociology of education, and quantitative
2243 Social Sciences and Humanities Building
Paul Heckman received his degree in Curriculum and the Study of
Schooling from the University of California, Los Angeles in
1982. His research focuses on the educational ecology of
communities, school restructuring, and school culture, change and
Paul Hastings received his degree from the University of Toronto.
His research focuses on the impact of stressors on child and
adolescent well-being, and the effects of poverty on
physiological reactivity, regulation and development of mental
and physical health problems.
Rand Conger received his degree in Sociology from the University
of Washington in 1976. His research focuses on social and
economic stress; life course development; family interaction
processes; and family research methods.
President Obama is hoping to fight poverty, in five so-called
“promise zones.” The government is targeting those areas for
economic revitalization. Host Michel Martin and U.S. Agriculture
Secretary Tom Vilsack take a look at the rural communities
involved, and the special challenges to fight poverty there.
Growing up poor has long been associated with reduced educational
attainment and lower lifetime earnings. Some evidence also
suggests a higher risk of depression, substance abuse and other
diseases in adulthood. Even for those who manage to overcome
humble beginnings, early-life poverty may leave a lasting mark,
accelerating aging and increasing the risk of degenerative
disease in adulthood.