- On Capitol Hill
- On Wall Street
- In the Press
- Policy Reform Work
Our projects are designed to empower policy makers to create positive change. With a focus on collaboration and outreach, we provide original, standards-based research on key policy issues.
SCEPA joined with the Economic Policy Institute on Capitol Hill to brief congressional staff and policy experts on tax expenditures, or incentives given through the tax code without scrutiny by Congress.
SCEPA economists are working on the prospects for a more progressive economic order to emerge from the shock of the recession. They have published papers and documents that place current events in a longer-term context as well as policy proposals to deal with short-term concerns. They are also documenting the emerging discussion of how the discipline of economics is reacting to the Great Recession and the questioning of conventional economic analysis.
Lance Taylor, a SCEPA Faculty Fellow, presents an overview of his new book, Maynard’s Revenge, in a Google Tech Talk.
The book, published this November by Harvard University Press, is a timely analysis of mainstream macroeconomics, posing the need for a more useful and realistic economic analysis that can provide a better understanding of the ongoing global financial and economic crisis.
The government spends $143 billion through tax breaks in an effort to expand pension coverage and security. Yet, over half of the American workforce does not have a pension. Retirement insecurity hurts business plans, workers’ lives and retiree well-being. Reform is needed.
SCEPA’s Guaranteeing Retirement Income Project, sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation and in collaboration with Demos and the Economic Policy Institute, has a plan to guarantee safe and secure retirement income for all Americans.
From the Arctic to the Indian Ocean to the South Pacific, small island states and coastal lines have become home to the most vulnerable communities. The threat of rising sea levels in the wake of climate change pushes populations to relocate to safer areas. But do contemporary legal frameworks recognize and protect the rights of climate migrants?
On September 8, 2016, Professor Randall Abate, future dean of the Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University College of Law School, joined SCEPA's Economics of Climate Change lecture series to discuss how international environmental law, international human rights, and U.S. domestic legal protection could save vulnerable and marginalized populations of climate refugees.
As a specialist in international and comparative environmental law, Professor Abate has taught in Argentina, Canada, Cayman Islands, China, Kenya, India, Spain and Ukraine. Professor Abate has published and presented widely on environmental law topics, with a recent emphasis on climate change law and justice. His upcoming book, Climate Justice, includes case studies on global and regional governance challenges. Early in his career, Professor Abate advocated for environmental law matters on behalf of law firms in Manhattan. He holds a B.A. from the University of Rochester and a J.D. and M.S.E.L. (Environmental Law and Policy) from Vermont Law School.
"The Plight of Climate Refugees" is hosted by SCEPA's Economics of Climate Change Project, directed by Willi Semmler, Henry Arnold Professor of Economics in cooperation with the oikos NYC student organization and the New School University Student Senate (USS).
The historically low headline unemployment rate for older workers - 3.5% in August according to today’s BLS jobs report - is frequently cited as evidence that people can can continue to work if they have inadequate retirement income.
However, the official unemployment rate overstates the strength of the labor market for older workers. For example, an increasing share of older workers are in “bad jobs” - 29.1% in July 2016 compared to 27.0% in July 2006 - that pay less than two-thirds of the median wage (which was $880 per week last month).
To provide a full picture of the reality older workers face in the job market, we are introducing “Older Workers at a Glance.” This one-of-a-kind feature reports key labor market statistics (described below) for workers over 55 as a supplement to our monthly analysis of market trends.
This documentation seeks to provide for a more informed discussion of the policies needed to address the retirement crisis and the resulting downward mobility of workers after a lifetime of work. Rather than cutting Social Security benefits by raising the retirement age, we need to ensure all workers a viable path to retirement security through Guaranteed Retirement Accounts on top of Social Security.
Two of today’s most contentious policy issues are income inequality and the future of Social Security. While often discussed separately, ReLab’s new working paper, “Reducing Inequality Through Social Security,” investigates if Social Security reform can help reduce inequality for all U.S. workers.
The paper, co-authored by Kyle Moore and Peter Arno, uses data from the Social Security Administration to determine that income inequality would experience a small reduction if Social Security reform includes both removing the maximum taxable earnings cap, the “salary cap,” and increasing the minimum benefit. This effect is due to ensuring that all workers pay the same percentage of their earnings into the program while providing increased support to those below the federal poverty level.
This research supports the need to focus not only on ensuring Social Security’s solvency for future generations, but also building the program’s ability to support all working Americans.