Informing policy. Inspiring change. Improving lives.
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202 785-5100


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

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


Summer 2002 Quarterly Newsletter
by (July 2002)


Women’s Status and Social Capital Across the States
by Amy Caiazza, Ph.D., Robert D. Putnam, Ph.D. (June 2002)

In 2000, Robert Putnam’s book Bowling Alone called attention to a compelling problem: a decline in levels of social capital, or community connectedness, across the United States. On a variety of indicators of political and civic involvement, including voter participation, involvement as members and leaders in civic groups, religious involvement, philanthropy, and even informal activities such as dinner parties and picnics, Americans have fewer connections with their neighbors than they did in the 1950s and 1960s. This Briefing Paper analyzes the relationships between social capital and indicators of women’s status. Using data on social capital from Bowling Alone and data collected by IWPR for its Status of Women in the States project, the paper assesses trends across the states on both dimensions. Overall, the findings suggest that there is a strong relationship between levels of social capital and women’s status. This, in turn, suggests that women and women’s organizations should be engaged in this important national debate.

#I911, Briefing Paper, 7 pages

Disabilities among Children and Mothers in Low-Income Families
by Sunhwa Lee, Ph.D., Melissa Sills, and Gi-Taik Oh, Ph.D. (June 2002)

This Research-in-Brief presents selected findings from an IWPR analysis examining disabilities among children and mothers in low-income families. The findings indicate that single mothers receiving TANF are more likely than other low-income mothers to have a child with a disability. Furthermore, they themselves are more likely to have a disability. Nearly half of single-mothers receiving TANF have a disability or a disabled child, but only a small proportion receives government supports. The high prevalence of disabilities among TANF recipients underscores a need for careful assessment of disability status and accompanying difficulties among low-income families, as well as a need to provide continued income support and expanded childcare services for this highly disadvantaged population.

Preview not available

Marriage Promotion and Low-Income Communities: An Examination of Real Needs and Real Solutions
by Avis Jones-DeWeever, Ph.D. (May 2002)

One of the most private, personal, and critical decisions one makes in life is if, when, and whom one should marry. It seems the ultimate in big government, if not social engineering, to have public policy anywhere near these critical, life-altering decisions; but this is precisely what some members of Congress and the Bush Administration have in mind, to the tune of $200-300 million per year, in the context of TANF reauthorization.

#D450, Briefing Paper, 6 pages

Life After Welfare Reform: Low-Income Single Parent Families, Pre- and Post-TANF
by Janice Peterson, Xue Song, Avis Jones-DeWeever, Ph.D. (May 2002)

This Research-in-Brief is based on selected findings from an Institute for Women’s Policy Research study, Life After Welfare Reform: The Characteristics, Work, and Well Being of Low-Income Single Parent Families, Pre- and Post-PRWORA. The findings in this study underscore the need to make improvements to the welfare system to address gender and racial inequities and focus on poverty reduction.

#D446, Research-in-Brief, 6 pages

Does Women’s Representation in Elected Office Lead to Women-Friendly Policy?
by Amy Caiazza, Ph.D. (April 2002)

#I910, Research-in-Brief, 6 pages

Marriage and Poverty: An Annotated Bibliography
by Hedieh Rahmanou, Amy LeMar (April 2002)

This annotated bibliography is designed to provide researchers, policymakers, advocates, and the general public with an overview of the debate and research surrounding the promotion of marriage as a solution to reducing poverty. In addition to newspaper articles familiarizing the reader with the current debate, topics covered in this bibliography include: economic insecurity and single motherhood, child welfare and single motherhood, factors that influence marital decisions, race and family formation, the conservative and feminist perspectives, and current policy proposals.


New Welfare Proposals Would Require Mothers Receiving Assistance to Work More than the Average American Mom; Child Care Inadequate
by (April 2002)


Winter/Spring 2002 Quarterly Newsletter
by (April 2002)


Why Privatizing Government Services Would Hurt Women Workers
by Annette Bernhardt, Ph.D., and Laura Dresser, Ph.D. (March 2002)

This report analyzes the implications of privatization for women workers, especially those employed in low-end occupations. Data analyzed show that women disproportionately depend on the public sector for jobs that pay decent wages and offer benefits. This is especially true for African American and Hispanic women, and for women who do not have a college education. 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. The evidence suggests that privatizing government services will have a negative impact on women workers, especially those workers who are most vulnerable.

#B237, 28 pages
Preview not available

Education and Job Training Build Strong Families
by Deanna Lyter (March 2002)

Improving the home life of children begins with expanding the opportunities and skills of the parents. Through job training and education, parents are prepared for more stable and higher paying occupations that help them rise out of poverty.

#B238, 4 pages

Education and Job Training Build Strong Families
by Deanna Lyter (March 2002)

More than 11.5 million children live in poverty (US DOC 2001a) and likely will experience first-hand what research tells us – that poverty has long-lasting negative effects (McLeod and Shanahan 1996; McLoyd 1998; Reynolds and Ross 1998; Vandivere et al. 2000). Growing up in poverty, particularly if it is persistent:


Job Training and Education Fight Poverty
by M. K. Tally (March 2002)

The current federal welfare law limits the availability of education and training programs. The reauthorization of the federal Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Block Grant offers an opportunity to make job training and education a central focus of welfare. This Fact Sheet is a synthesis of the data about benefits of these programs and makes recommendations on incorporating them into the current law.

Preview not available

Job Training and Education Fight Poverty
by IWPR (March 2002)

Reviews the research literature on the effects of job training and education for parents on children and families. Available by mail in limited quantities. E-mail iwpr [at] iwpr [dot] org to place an order.

Preview not available

Poverty, Welfare, and Income Security
by Barbara Gault (March 2002)

Testimony before the House Education and The Workfroce Committee Subcommittee on 21st Century Competitiveness. Focuses on the continuing implementation of the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) and the reauthorization of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) and their importance in improving access to training for welfare recipients. Achieving the quality performance standards associated with WIA would help low-income women find and train for high quality, high demand jobs, achieve self-sufficiency, and reduce poverty.


Utilizing Workforce Investment Act Programs and TANF to Provide Education and Training Opportunities to Reduce Poverty Among Low-Income Women
by Barbara Gault, Ph.D. (March 2002)

Testimony of Barbara Gault, Director of Research, Institute for Women's Policy Research, before the House Education and Workforce Committee, Subcommittee on 21st Century Competitiveness, March 12, 2002


Working First But Working Poor: The Need for Education and Training Following Welfare Reform
by Cynthia Negrey, Stacie Golin, Sunhwa Lee, Holly Mead, Barbara Gault (March 2002)

An in-depth look at education and training- specifically for nontraditional jobs- as a solution for ending the cycle of poverty and helping women reach self-sufficiency. Based on hundreds of interviews at 29 sites in seven metropolitan areas in seven states.

Preview not available

Models for Action: Making Research Work for Women
by Jean Sinzdak (February 2002)

A how-to manual offering extensive and practical guidance for using the Status of Women in the States reports to further state policy agendas for advocates, researcherse, and policymakers. Shows individuals and groups how to draw attention to issues that are critical to the status of women in their states. Available by mail in limited quantities. E-mail iwpr [at] iwpr [dot] org to place an order.


The Benefits of Unionization for Workers in the Retail Food Industry
by Vicky Lovell, Ph.D., and Eliane Kim (February 2002)

This Research-in-Brief summarizes the findings of an analysis of the benefits of unionization in the retail food industry conducted by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research (IWPR). Using data from the Current Population Survey (CPS), a dataset collected monthly by the federal government, this project compared the wages and benefits of unionized and nonunionized workers in the retail food industry, particularly for women, single mothers, cashiers, part-time workers, and part-time women workers.1 The project also suggests policy changes, summarized here, that would allow more women workers to experience the advantages of unionization.

#C351, Research-in-Brief, 7 pages
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