ABC News

How New Jersey’s biggest city is using guaranteed income to aid pandemic recovery

The most populous city in New Jersey has launched a pilot program to give guaranteed income to some residents, as the pandemic has exacerbated the racial wealth gap and exposed the economic vulnerabilities millions of Americans face. The program was launched in collaboration with Mayors for a Guaranteed Income, a national program spearheading guaranteed income pilot programs across the U.S., and the research study will be led by the Center for Guaranteed Income Research (CGIR) at the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy and Practice (SP2).

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The Indian Express

A voice for sex workers

Smarajit Jana, who recently passed away, nudged governments, aid agencies, NGOs and activists into respecting the choices made by sex workers, writes SP2 associate professor Toorjo Ghose, PhD.

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The Guardian

Is a $300 unemployment boost holding back jobs? Yes and no

Tensions are flaring over a $300 supplement to weekly unemployment benefits. A weaker-than-expected April jobs report has led to outcry in some circles that the payments are fueling a labor shortage. The extra aid offers an incentive for laid-off workers to stay home, critics contend, making it hard for businesses to hire. Others think factors like child care and the coronavirus play a primary role in hiring difficulties. The truth is likely somewhere is the middle, according to economists.

“It’s getting much harder to hire than in the recent past, by the sheer acceleration of job creation,” according to Ioana Marinescu, an assistant professor of economics at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice. “We have no commensurate acceleration in people looking for jobs.”

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The Guardian

‘No one wants to work anymore’: the truth behind this unemployment benefits myth

In restaurants across the country, the same sign is popping up: “We are short staffed. Please be patient with the staff that did show up. No one wants to work any more.” The implication is that the federal government’s expanded unemployment benefits of $300 each week are keeping people at home. Unfortunately for them, what’s happening is a feature, not a bug, of the US economic system and the blame can’t entirely be placed on a $300 weekly check.

University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice economist Ioana Marinescu said: “In the absence of the benefits there would probably be a little bit more applications and hiring would be a little bit easier, but the main drive of the recent change in sentiment is that hiring is accelerating.”

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Washington Post

When philanthropy’s power couple splits, Melinda French Gates’s influence could grow

As the power couple of giving splits, Melinda French Gates’s global influence in philanthropy could grow even further, reflecting her own values and interests.

Altering the priorities at a giant and well-established philanthropy seems unlikely, said Peter Frumkin, professor of social policy and practice at the University of Pennsylvania and author of “Strategic Giving: The Art and Science of Philanthropy.”

“It is very hard to change directions quickly when you have a huge institution with multiyear commitments outstanding around the world,” Frumkin said.

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School of Social Policy & Practice Excellence in Teaching Awards

The SP2 Excellence in Teaching Award is presented to both standing and non-standing faculty members in recognition of excellence in teaching and mentoring during the previous year. Winners of this award are chosen by the Student Policies and Procedures Committee from the pool of five standing and five non-standing faculty with the highest quantitative scores for “overall quality of the instructor” on the course evaluations. The 2021 award honorees are SP2 standing faculty members Drs. Ram A. Cnaan and Allison Werner-Lin, and non-standing faculty members Drs. Meredith Myers, Matthew Bennett, and Daniel Baker.

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Penn Today

Inaugural Presidential Ph.D. Fellows announced

President Amy Gutmann, Provost Wendell Pritchett, and Deputy Provost Beth Winkelstein have announced the recipients of the inaugural class of Presidential Ph.D. Fellows. Drawing from the most accomplished and diverse Ph.D. trainees, the 2021 Presidential Ph.D. Fellows come from across the nine schools at Penn that offer Ph.D. programs, including Sharon Zanti and Jessica Kim, students at the School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2).

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Detroit Free Press

Charity experts: No changes expected at Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation after divorce

Several philanthropic experts said that the recently announced divorce of Bill and Melinda Gates likely will have no short-term effect on the world-renowned, Seattle-based foundation that bears their names. However, it’s possible the foundation could spin off another charity if the divorce is not amicable, according to some charity experts.

Peter Frumkin, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice, whose research specializes in philanthropy, said in the long run there is a chance the direction of the Gates Foundation could change, resulting in a spinoff if there are problems with the divorce. Frumkin said there have been foundations run by siblings who could not get along and their charity broke into several entities.

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Los Angeles Times

Editorial: Are cash handouts a better antidote to poverty? Let’s find out

Buoyed by federal COVID relief money, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has proposed the country’s largest guaranteed income experiment yet, giving 2,000 L.A. families cash grants of $1,000 a month for one year. Garcetti’s test, which is being designed with the help of the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Guaranteed Income Research, aims to fill in some of the knowledge gaps, alongside other efforts across the country.

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SP2 News

Headshot of Dr. Susan Sorenson

Faculty & Research

Faculty Tribute: SP2 Professor, Ortner Center Director Susan B. Sorenson Retiring in 2021

School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) professor Susan B. Sorenson, PhD, is taking early retirement at the end of...

Headshot of Dr. Mark Stern

Faculty & Research

Faculty Tribute: SP2 Professor Mark Stern Retiring in 2021

Penn School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) Professor Mark J. Stern will retire effective July 1, 2021. Professor Stern,...

tea light reflecting on hand in the dark

Faculty & Research, Student Life

Reflecting on Juneteenth

A Message from Dean Sally Bachman, PhD: As we approach Juneteenth, I am writing to encourage all members of Penn’s School...

Headshot of Dr. Roberta Iversen

Faculty & Research

Faculty Tribute: SP2 Associate Professor Roberta Rehner Iversen Retiring in 2021

Roberta (Bobbie) Iversen, PhD, MSS, an associate professor at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2), is retiring at...

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