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IWPR publishes its research in formats ranging from short fact sheets to longer form research reports. The Institute publishes on topics addressing the policy needs of women, including pay equity, retirement security, family leave, paid sick days, and employment.

For a full overview of our research areas and to view publications by topic, please visit our Initiatives area. All publications are available for free download on our website or you may choose to buy them through the Google Checkout icon to the right of the publication listing.  To request a publication by phone or e-mail, please contact Mallory Mpare at 202-785-5100 or

Browse our publications below or use our Publication Finder to search for what you're looking for.

Latest Reports from IWPR

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Come Together: Progressives After 9-11
by Katrina vanden Heuvel (October 2001)

The editor of The Nation challenges activists to strengthen their work by building infrastructure in this keynote speech presented at the Fourth Annual EARN (Economic Analysis Research Network) Conference in Lisle, IL. Available by mail in limited quantities. E-mail iwpr [at] iwpr [dot] org to place an order.


Family Leave for Low-Income Working Women: Providing Paid Leave through Temporary Disability Insurance, The New Jersey Case
by Michele I. Naples (October 2001)

The Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) provided for unpaid time off from work to care for sick relatives or a newborn or adopted child, guaranteeing leave-takers’ jobs when they returned to work. Low-wage workers and single parents, however, cannot fully benefit from the FMLA because it offers no replacement income. In families that depend on women’s earnings to maintain living standards, unpaid time off from work threatens family finances that are already strained by the costs of bearing and providing for a new child, or the costs of health care for a sick family member. To ensure that those most in need of the protections of the FMLA can take advantage of the law, New Jersey is one among several states considering legislation to provide Family-Leave Insurance (FLI): paid leave to care for newborn babies and adopted children (BAA), and paid family-disability leave (FDL) to care for an ill child, spouse, or elderly parent. This Research-in-Brief summarizes a research project conducted by Michele I. Naples and Meryl Frank that examined proposals in New Jersey for paid family and medical leave programs. It discusses the policy context in which these programs are being considered and details the technical considerations behind estimating the cost of providing family leave insurance.


Fall 2001 Quarterly Newsletter
by (October 2001)

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Women's Community Involvement: The Effects of Money, Safety, Parenthood and Friends
by Amy Caiazza (September 2001)

This Briefing paper suggests that gender plays an important role in determining who participates in civic issues and who does not.


The Widening Gap: A New Book on the Struggle to Balance Work and Caregiving
by Hedieh Rahmanou (September 2001)

This Research-in-Brief is based on selected findings from a new book by Jody Heymann, Director of Policy at the Harvard Center for Society and Health. Published by Basic Books in 2000, The Widening Gap: Why America’s Working Families are in Jeopardy and What Can Be Done About It reveals the failure of our nation’s employer-based support system to help families meet their caregiving responsibilities. Copyright permission was granted by Perseus Books LLC.

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Women's Community Involvement: The Effects of Money, Safety, Parenthood, and Friends
by Amy Caiazza, Ph.D. (September 2001)

Decreased civic and political participation is a pressing problem in our country. Today, Americans are less likely to vote, work for a party or candidate, or attend a political meeting than they were 40 years ago. They belong to fewer social and community organizations and attend fewer meetings. As a result, Americans have many fewer "ties that bind;" hence, they lack crucial "social capital" that contributes to building safe and healthy communities. This research-in-brief suggests that gender plays an important role in determining who participates in the United States. Women chose to participate, or not to, for different reasons than men. Efforts to increase civic participation by both sexes need to take these differences into account if levels of civic and political participation are to increase in America.


The Status of Women in Florida, 2002: Highlights
by (August 2001)


Working First But Working Poor: The Need for Education & Training Following Welfare Reform
by Cynthia Negrey, Ph.D., Stacie Golin, Ph.D., Sunhwa Lee, Ph.D., Holly Mead, Barbara Gault, Ph.D. (August 2001)

This report presents findings of an exploratory study about job training for low-income people, particularly women leaving welfare. Data are from in-depth structured interviews conducted from November 1999 to July 2000 with 67 welfare case managers, vocational counselors, job training administrators, and job training instructors in seven cities nationwide. The report also discusses results from telephone interviews conducted during the autumn of 2000 with 163 students drawn from community colleges and other job training organizations where staff participated in our study.

#D443, Executive Summary, 20 pages

Summer 2001 Quarterly Newsletter
by (July 2001)


Welfare Network Directory
by Bethany Snyder, April Shaw, Annisah Um'rani, Lisa Osburn (June 2001)

A tool for networking among advocates, researchers, and others concerned with welfare reform issues. Divided conveniently into an alphabetical list, a state index, and an interest index.

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Living With or Dying From Breast Cancer a Matter of Race
by IWPR (May 2001)


The Gender Gap in Pension Coverage: What Does the Future Hold?
by Lois Shaw, PhD and Catherine Hill, PhD (May 2001)

This report documents pension coverage among male and female employees and examines voluntary and involuntary reasons why women and men do not participate in pension plans. The good news is that women are participating in pension plans in greater numbers and, for women working full-time, near equality with men has been achieved. Part-time workers (who are disproportionately women), however, remain much less likely to participate in employer- sponsored pension plans. Less than a third of part-time workers participate in a pension plan. The largest difference in participation between female and male employees occurs for older workers (aged 45-64), with 35 percent of women saying they work too few hours to participate in their company’s plan compared with 20 percent of men. Overall, older female employees are less likely to expect to have a pension in retirement from any source than are older male workers; 36 percent of male employees lack a pension from any employer compared with 44 percent of female employees.

#E507, 20 pages
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Today's Women Workers: Shut Out of Yesterday's Unemployment Insurance System
by IWPR (May 2001)

A look at the unequal distribution of unemployment insurance and flaws in the system that prevent women from receiving earned benefits.


Spring 2001 Quarterly Newsletter
by (May 2001)

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The Influence of Income, Education, and Work Status on Women's Well Being (Published by Women's Health Issues)
by Holly Mead, Kristine Witkowski, Barbara Gault, and Heidi Hartmann (May 2001)


Today’s Women Workers: Shut Out of Yesterday’s Unemployment Insurance System
by Vicky Lovell, Ph.D., and Catherine Hill, Ph.D. (April 2001)

This Fact Sheet discusses two aspects of the UI system that prevent many women from receiving the UI benefits they have earned: (1) monetary eligibility criteria, and (2) the exclusion of part-time workers. It also reviews other barriers to UI receipt and policy changes that would extend support of this fundamental employment-based program to more working women.


The Gender Gap in Pension Coverage: Women Working Full-Time Are Catching Up, But Part-Time Workers Have Been Left Behind
by Lois Shaw, Ph.D., and Catherine Hill, Ph.D. (March 2001)

The good news is that women are participating in pension plans in greater numbers than ever before. Based on data from the Pension Topical Module of the Survey of Income and Program Participation collected in 1995 by the Bureau of Census, IWPR found that 60 percent of full-time female workers participate in a pension plan, compared with 62 percent of full-time male workers. But bad news still abounds.

#E506, Research-in-Brief, 3 pages

Why Privatizing Government Services Would Hurt Women Workers
by Annette Bernhardt, Laura Dresser (March 2001)

Using the Current Population Survey, this report analyzes the implications of privatization for women workers, especially those employed in low-end occupations. Women disproportionately depend on the public sector for jobs that pay decent wages and offer benefits. In part, higher wages and better access to health and pension benefits in the public sector can be attributed to higher rates of union coverage. Suggests that privatizing government services will have a negative impact on women workers, especially those who are most vulnerable.

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Making Birth Control More Accessible to Women: A Cost-Benefit Analysis of Over-the-Counter Oral Contraceptives
by Holly Mead, Bethany Snyder (February 2001)

Evaluates costs and benefits of switching birth control pills to over-the-counter status to improve women's access to contraceptives.

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The Political Glass Ceiling: Gender, Strategy, and Incumbency in U.S. House Elections, 1978-1998
by IWPR (February 2001)

Summarizes research by Barbara Palmer and Dennis Simm, Southern Methodist University, examining factors contributing to the low number of women serving in elected office. Available by mail in limited quantities. E-mail iwpr [at] iwpr [dot] org to place an order.

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