Persistent Nonworkers Among the Long-Term Unemployed:
The Implications of 20 Years of Welfare-to-Work and Workforce Development Research (2011)
T. Herr and S. L. Wagner
This Project Match paper has two goals: (1) to reveal the extent to which work-focused programs and policies in the United States have had consistently small effects—or no effects—on increasing sustained employment among the most disadvantaged, and (2) to explain how the growing national focus on the revitalization of poor communities and improvement in their schools provides alternative avenues for engaging adults in these communities who still have no connection, or only a tenuous one, to the labor force. There are many important outcomes besides employment that we can help these individuals achieve by building on their roles as engaged parents and active community members.
Surprising Diversity in Financial Stability: A Cluster Analysis of Center for Working Families Clients in 12 Low-Income Chicago Communities (2010)
C. Chang, S. L. Wagner, and T. Herr
In Chicago, the Centers for Working Families (CWFs) are the most comprehensive effort to provide “bundled” employment and financial services to the city’s low-income families. This paper describes the results of a cluster analysis that was intended to determine which types of residents are seeking services from the 12 CWF sites, based on their financial circumstances and behavior at program entry. As the title of the paper suggests, the analysis revealed a surprising level of diversity, not only across sites but also within sites.
Beyond Barriers to Work: A Workforce Attachment Approach That Addresses Unpredictability, Halting Progress, and Human Nature (2007)
T. Herr and S. L. Wagner
Most program developers look at the challenge of workforce attachment through the lens of “barriers to work”—that is, they focus on ameliorating a discrete set of personal and family problems that are presumed to be the main reasons people do not work. In contrast, at Project Match staff look at the challenge through the lens of human development, a perspective focused on understanding the process of change and growth in individuals. This paper describes the differences between a barriers approach and a human development approach to workforce attachment, in terms of both theory and practice.
Ten Years of Working, Two Variations on Advancement: Changes in Annual Earnings Among Project Match Participants (2006)
S. L. Wagner, C. Chang, and T. Herr
Drawing on Project Match’s unparalleled longitudinal tracking system data, the authors analyze the interaction among wages, hours of work each month, and months of work each year to uncover patterns of labor-market advancement for long-term Project Match participants. They then explore whether there are correlations between high advancement and demographic characteristics, education/training credentials, or “better” first jobs.
Universal Engagement in Practice: Lessons from the Implementation of the Pathways Case Management System (2005)
Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.
L. Pavetti, M. Derr, J. Kauff, and G. Kirby
Mathematica studied implementation of Project Match’s Pathways System in three county welfare agencies: two in New York and one in California. As part of the study, Mathematica wrote this policy brief, which considers lessons from the implementation of Pathways for achieving universal engagement of welfare recipients and meeting higher federal participation rates.
Self-Efficacy as a Welfare-to-Work Goal: Emphasizing Both Psychology and Economics in Program Design (2003)
Herr and S.
monograph examines why welfare-to-work programs should be designed from
a more psychological perspective, particularly in regard to cultivating
in individuals a better sense of self-efficacya
critical facilitator and mediator of behavioral change.
An Unanticipated Story of Caseload Declines: The First Two Years of the Pathways Case Management System in Oswego County, New York (2002)
L. Wagner, C. Chang, and T. Herr
report focuses on participation and case closings for the 1,338 cash
welfare recipients during the first two years that Oswego County used
Project Match's Pathways Case Management System. Oswego is an upstate
New York county that uses Pathways with its entire TANF and GA caseloads.
Welfare Reform, the Next Phase: The Need to Apply the Lessons of Human Development (2001)
L. Wagner and D. Zvetina
This article appeared in the summer 2001 issue of Erkison Institute's Applied Research in Child Development. The article discusses the early effects of the 1996 federal welfare reforms and the role that a human development-based approach can play in promoting progress among welfare recipients toward economic and family stability.
Five Years of Welfare: Too Long? Too Short? Lessons from Project Match's Longitudinal Tracking Data (1998)
S. L. Wagner, T. Herr, C. Chang, and D. Brooks
The authors examine the likely impact of TANF's five-year time limit on state welfare caseloads, based on the experiences of Project Match participants. They use the findings to recommend outcomes for people who reach the time limit and are not steady, full-time workers.
Moving from Welfare to Work as Part of a Group: How Pathways Makes Caseload Connections (1998)
T. Herr and S. L. Wagner
The paper describes Project Match's Pathways Case Management System and how the unique implementation approach at each of the four original sites affected both the Pathways model and the normal operations of the sponsoring agency. The paper also describes the benefits of Pathways' monthly group meetings, both to agencies and participants.
Making the Shoe Fit: Creating a Work-Prep System for a Large and Diverse Welfare Population (1996)
T. Herr, S. L. Wagner, and R. Halpern
Combining research, theory, and best practice, this monograph provides a blueprint for a flexible welfare-to-work system that benefits all types of welfare recipients—from those who are working to those who need to develop the most basic skills and behaviors to succeed on the job. The authors take TANF's work requirements and time limit into account in their discussion.
Something Old, Something New: A Case Study of the Post-Employment Services Demonstration in Oregon (1995)
T. Herr, R. Halpern, and S. L. Wagner
Focused on actual day-to-day operations, this report looks at the experience of the Oregon site in the federal Post-Employment Services Demonstration. It includes recommendations for providing retention, reemployment, and advancement assistance in government and community-based welfare-to-work programs.
Lessons from Project Match for Welfare Reform (1994)
T. Herr and R. Halpern
This short paper summarizes the major lessons from Project Match's early years of direct-service experience and research, and their implications for government welfare policies.
Bridging the Worlds of Head Start and Welfare-to-Work: Building a Two-Generation Self-Sufficiency Program from the Ground Up (1993)
T. Herr and R. Halpern with R. Majeske
This monograph describes a model for turning Head Starts into programs that simultaneously promote positive child development, adult economic self-sufficiency, and family well-being.
Changing What Counts: Rethinking the Journey Out of Welfare (1991)
T. Herr and R. Halpern with A. Conrad
This monograph summarizes the research and theory underlying the development of Project Match's Incremental Ladder to Economic Independence, an innovative conceptual model for reimagining the welfare-to-work process.
High Job Turnover Among the Urban Poor: The Project Match Experience (1990)
L. Olson, L. Berg, and A. Conrad
The authors analyze data on job turnover among the early participants in Project Match's community-based employment program, and they discuss the reasons for the high rate of job loss.