NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Publications by Samuel Allen

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Working Papers and Chapters

January 2010A Patchwork Safety Net: A Survey of Cliometric Studies of Income Maintenance Programs in the United States in the First Half of the Twentieth Century
with Price V. Fishback, Jonathan Fox, Brendan Livingston: w15696
Social welfare programs in the United States are designed to serve as safety nets for people in hard times, in contrast with the universal approach found in many other developed western nations. In a survey of Cliometric studies of social welfare programs in the U.S., we examine the variation in the safety net in the U.S. across states in the 20th century, the determinants of the variation, and its impact on socioeconomic outcomes. The U.S. has always displayed substantial variation in the extent of the safety net because the features of most public social welfare programs are and were determined by local and state governments, even after the federal government became involved. Differences across states persist strongly for typically a decade, although the persistence weakens with time...

Published: Price Fishback & Samuel Allen & Jonathan Fox & Brendan Livingston, 2010. "A Patchwork Safety Net: A Survey Of Cliometric Studies Of Income Maintenance Programs In The United States In The First Half Of The Twentieth Century," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 24(5), pages 895-940, December. citation courtesy of

July 2008Lifting the Curse of Dimensionality: Measures of the Labor Legislation Climate in the States During the Progressive Era
with Price V. Fishback, Rebecca Holmes: w14167
One of the most difficult problems in the social sciences is measuring the policy climate in societies. Prior to the 1930s the vast majority of labor regulations in the U.S. were enacted at the state level. In this paper we develop several summary measures of labor regulation that document the changes in labor regulation across states and over time during the Progressive Era. The measures include an Employer-Share-Weighted Index (ESWI) that weights regulations by the share of workers affected and builds up the overall index from 17 categories of regulation; the number of pages of laws; appropriations for spending on labor issues per worker; and two nonparametric COORDINATES that summarize locations in a policy space. We describe the pluses and minuses of the measures, how strongly the...
October 2007Migration Creation, Diversion, and Retention: New Deal Grants and Migration: 1935-1940
with Todd Sorensen, Price V. Fishback, Shawn E. Kantor: w13491
During the 1930s the federal government embarked upon an ambitious series of grant programs designed to counteract the Great Depression. The amounts distributed varied widely across the country and potentially contributed to population shifts. We estimate an aggregate discrete choice model, in which household heads choose among 466 economic subregions. The structural model allows us to decompose the effects of program spending on migration into three categories: the effect of spending on keeping households in their origin (retention), the effect of pulling non-migrants out of their origin (creation), and the effect of causing migrants to substitute away from an alternative destination (diversion). An additional dollar of public works and relief spending increased net migration into an are...

Contact and additional information for this authorAll NBER papers and publicationsNBER Working Papers only

 
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