This is the program for the 2010 Joint Statistical Meetings in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Abstract Details

Activity Number: 287
Type: Topic Contributed
Date/Time: Tuesday, August 3, 2010 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Social Statistics Section
Abstract - #306450
Title: Defining the 'Working Poor': Theoretical and Empirical Considerations
Author(s): Marina Vornovytskyy*+
Companies: U.S. Census Bureau
Address: 4700 Silver Hill Rd, Washington, DC, 20233,
Keywords: SIPP ; Longitudinal ; Working poor ; Employment

In the 1990s, debates over welfare reform generated a lot of interest in the economic conditions of those employed at the bottom of the labor market. Since then, the public's interest in the labor market performance of the working poor as a group subsided, with the focus shifting to sub-groups. This paper aims to fill this gap in the literature in three ways. The paper explores theoretical issues that arise in defining the "working poor." Secondly, the study uses 2004 longitudinal data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP) to explore how using alternative definitions of the working poor changes the relationship between one's socio-demographic characteristics and the odds of being employed at the bottom of the labor market. Finally, the paper analyzes whether patterns of upward mobility of the working poor are sensitive to the definition of the working poor used.

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