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Public Funding for Art: Chicago Compared with 12 Peer Regions

June 10, 2014 Comments off

Public Funding for Art: Chicago Compared with 12 Peer Regions
Source: University of Chicago (Cultural Policy Center)
From press release:

Local direct public funding provided through grants for the arts in Chicago is low compared to peer regions in both total dollar and per capita terms, according to a new report from the Cultural Policy Center at the University of Chicago.

The study tracks direct public funding for the arts in 13 regions from 2002-2012. It provides a nuanced look at how much money comes to the nonprofit arts from national, state and local arts agencies, with an emphasis on the important role of local arts agencies. While most studies of public funding for the arts use appropriations made on the national and state levels and estimates of local expenditures, this report draws exact dollar figures from grant-level data.

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Have Inter-Judge Sentencing Disparities Increased in an Advisory Guidelines Regime? Evidence from Booker

March 27, 2014 Comments off

Have Inter-Judge Sentencing Disparities Increased in an Advisory Guidelines Regime? Evidence from Booker (PDF)
Source: University of Chicago School of Law

The Federal Sentencing Guidelines were promulgated in response to concerns of widespread disparities in sentencing. After almost two decades of determinate sentencing, the Guidelines were rendered advisory in United States v. Booker . What has been the result of reintroducing greater judicial discretion on inter-judge disparities, or differences in sentencing outcomes that are attributable to the mere happenstance of the sentencing judge assigned? This Article utilizes new data covering over 600,000 criminal defendants linked to sentencing judge to undertake the first national empirical analysis of inter-judge disparities post Booker .

The results are striking: inter-judge sentencing disparities have doubled since the Guidelines became advisory. Some of the recent increase in disparities can be attributed to differential sentencing behavior associated with judge demographic characteristics, with Democratic and female judges being more likely to exercise their enhanced discretion after Booker . Newer judges appointed after Booker also appear less anchored to the Guidelines than judges with experience sentencing under the mandatory Guidelines regime.

Disentangling the effect of various actors on sentencing disparities, I find that prosecutorial charging is a prominent source of disparities. Rather than charge mandatory minimums uniformly across eligible cases, prosecutors appear to selectively apply mandatory minimums in response to the identity of sentencing judge, potentially through superseding indictments. Drawing on this empirical evidence, the Article suggests that recent sentencing proposals that call for a reduction in judicial discretion in order to reduce disparities may overlook the substantial contribution of prosecutors.

The Effects of Price Transparency Regulation on Prices in the Healthcare Industry

October 24, 2013 Comments off

The Effects of Price Transparency Regulation on Prices in the Healthcare Industry (PDF)
Source: University of Chicago (Booth School)

Policymakers have enacted price transparency regulations in over thirty states during the past decade as an attempt to control rising healthcare costs. This paper provides empirical evidence on the effects of these regulations. Using micro data on actual healthcare purchases, and exploiting both between- and within-state variation to address endogeneity concerns, we find that price transparency regulations reduce the price charged for common, uncomplicated, elective procedures by an average of approximately 7%. Further evidence indicates that the reduction in charge prices is concentrated where competition among providers is most intense and that this reduction is attributable to a decline in the prices charged by the highest priced providers. Among insured patients, reductions in payments are concentrated among the most price sensitive patients, as captured by patients’ coinsurance. We also find that insured patients that change providers are more likely to switch to a lower cost provider subsequent to regulation. Overall, our evidence indicates that price transparency regulation leads to a reduction in healthcare prices for patients with incentives to consider costs.

Gender identity and relative income within households

June 3, 2013 Comments off

Gender identity and relative income within households (PDF)
Source: University of Chicago (Booth School)

We examine causes and consequences of relative income within households. We establish that gender identity { in particular, an aversion to the wife earning more than the husband – impacts marriage formation, the wife’s labor force participation, the wife’s income conditional on working, marriage satisfaction, likelihood of divorce, and the division of home production. The distribution of the share of household income earned by the wife exhibits a sharp cli at 0.5, which suggests that a couple is less willing to match if her income exceeds his. Within marriage markets, when a randomly chosen woman becomes more likely to earn more than a randomly chosen man, marriage rates decline. Within couples, if the wife’s potential income (based on her demographics) is likely to exceed the husband’s, the wife is less likely to be in the labor force and earns less than her potential if she does work. Couples where the wife earns more than the husband are less satis ed with their marriage and are more likely to divorce. Finally, based on time use surveys, the gender gap in non-market work is larger if the wife earns more than the husband.

Innovations in the Field of Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention: A Review of the Literature

October 1, 2012 Comments off

Innovations in the Field of Child Abuse and Neglect Prevention: A Review of the Literature (PDF)

Source: Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago

Child abuse and neglect prevention is a complex field due, in part, to the diverse and numerous factors that can lead to maltreatment. As a result, prevention strategies, interventions, and initiatives must address multiple issues and rely on expertise from a variety of disciplines. This literature review considers recent and multidisciplinary research that can lead to innovative and improved ways to target, design, and monitor child abuse prevention efforts.

Parents’ Pasts and Families’ Futures: Using Family Assessments to Inform Perspectives on Reasonable Efforts and Reunification

September 25, 2012 Comments off

Parents’ Pasts and Families’ Futures: Using Family Assessments to Inform Perspectives on Reasonable Efforts and Reunification (PDF)

Source: Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago

In this study, assessments conducted as part of the Illinois integrated assessment program allow us to look at a subset of parents for whom reunification might seem unlikely given their own personal histories and extensive exposure to trauma. Using a sample of narrative assessment reports drawn from the IAs, we explore the nature and prevalence of traumatic experiences among biological parents whose children were placed in the custody of the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS). The relationship between parents’ childhood experiences and their current functioning is explored, as are data on reunification outcomes.

The findings that a subset of parents involved with the child welfare system have extensive childhood trauma experiences and present with multiple problems or service needs have implications for caseworker engagement as well as interventions. We examine what caseworkers and clinicians see as the initial prognosis for these families as well as the reunification and reentry outcomes after the children entered foster care. We hope to encourage dialogue about what policies and practices might need to be developed and implemented in order to improve long-term child and family well-being outcomes for this particular group of families. The study raises fundamental questions about our obligation to and approach to protecting children and to promoting their well-being.

Set in Stone: Building America’s New Generation of Arts Facilities 1994-2008

June 29, 2012 Comments off

Set in Stone: Building America’s New Generation of Arts Facilities 1994-2008

Source: Cultural Policy Center (University of Chicago)

From press release:

Civic leaders, arts organizations, donors and government officials can better plan new or expanded arts facilities by first focusing on the arts organizations’ missions and assessing demand for the projects, according to a new study from the Cultural Policy Center at the University of Chicago.

The study, “Set in Stone,” looks at a major building boom of museums, performing arts centers and theaters in the United States from 1994 to 2008. It is the first scientifically prepared study of its kind and was requested both by cultural leaders and major foundations that had, in many cases, provided support for these building projects.

The work was based on interviews with people in more than 500 organizations and drew data from more than 700 building projects, including both new facilities and major renovations. The costs of the projects ranged from $4 million to $335 million. It relied on rare, behind-the-scenes access to the discussions surrounding the buildings.

See: Report shows overspending on cultural institutions in boom years (EurekAlert!)

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