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IPPSR is MSU’s new hub for public policy information and research. Search our summaries of scientific research with implications for public policy by inputting keywords in the search box or selecting options from the menus below.

Policy Research

Health Related Outcomes among the Poor: Medicaid Expansion vs. Non Expansion States

Xuesong Han, Binh T. Nguyen, Jeffrey Drope, Ahmedin Jemal

December 2015

In nonexpanding Medicaid states, low-income adults were more likely to be black and/or rural residents. They fared much worse than their counterparts in expanding Medicaid states, and had less care utilization as well as fewer prescriptions. While they had lower medical expenditures, they also had higher out of pocket expenditures than their counterparts.

State Takeovers of School Districts and Related Litigation: Michigan as a Case Study

Kristi Bowman

August 2013

The article summarizes emergency manager laws as they pertained to the Michigan Public Schools system over the last 30 years. The article focuses primarily on comparing public act 72 and public act 4 and summarizes major complaints against the later. The article then points out that under public act 4 emergency managers are allowed to take over both fiscal and academic management when a school is in fiscal trouble. It finds this represents a problem as emergency managers are not necessarily well versed in academic policy.

Lead Exposure and Behavior: Effects on Aggression and Risky Behavior among Children and Adolescents

Jessica Reyes

February 2015

The article studies groups of people exposed to lead in childhood and compares them against others who were not. The study finds that exposure to lead in childhood has a number of adverse effects beyond those found in early stages. These effects include teen pregnancy, teen delinquency, increased aggression throughout early adulthood and increased probability of committing a crime.

Exploring the Effect of Right to Work on Private Wages

Anthony Roberts, Robert Habans

September 2015

The authors employed two analytical techniques to determine the economic effect(s) of right to work laws. First, the authors used a multi-level regression analysis to determine right to work law effects on individual hourly earnings and wage differences while controlling for demographics and regulatory characteristics of the state. Next, the authors employed a propensity-score matching technique, i.e. they took a sample of workers in right to work states and constructed a sample of workers that are similar on a number of levels in a non-right to work state, and compared the two groups. From the regression model, the authors determined that private workers in non-rtw states earn around 1% more than workers in right to work states. From their matching technique the authors estimated that workers in non-right to work states earned around 6% more than their counterparts in right to work states.

The Flint Fiscal Playbook: An Assessment of the Emergency Manager Years (2011-2015)

Mary Doidge, Eric Scorsone, Traci Taylor, Josh Sapotichne, Erika Rosebrook, Danielle Kaminski

July 2015

The authors assess the actions taken by the State appointed Emergency Managers in the City of Flint, Michigan. Of particular note, the authors look at the external constraints faced by the City of Flint, for example, rising unemployment, industry relocation, demographic shifts (massive population loss), as well as housing & economic trends. After highlighting these trends, the authors systematically observed the actions taken by the Emergency Manager. These actions include wage & salary freezes, reduction in non-essential personnel, restricting of pension and health care obligations, as well as increases in water and sewage fees.

Impacts of Child Development Accounts on maternal depressive symptoms: Evidence from a randomized statewide policy experiment

Jin Huang, Michael Sherraden, Jason Q. Purnell

November 2013

This randomized trial analyzes the effect Child Development Accounts (long-term investment accounts) have on mother’s depression. Primary caregivers of children in Oklahoma were randomly selected to be offered a Child Development Account as part of the College Savings Plan. Those parents whose children had Development accounts were highly correlated with higher levels of savings and statistically significant lower levels of depression. Children with accounts exhibited higher levels of social-motional development. These results were stronger in families with lower levels of income and education.

Which Women Can Run? Gender, Partisanship, and Candidate Donor Networks

Danielle M. Thomsen , Michele L. Swers

June 2017

This study found that in both primary and general elections, female Democrats received significantly more donations from female donors than male Democrats. Similarly, male Democrats received significantly more donations from male donors than female Democrats. This suggests than Democratic men and women likely have differing donor networks. However, the same cannot be said for Republicans. Candidate gender makes no difference for Republican donors, suggesting than male and female Republicans have similar donor networks.

The Aging of America Impact on Health Care Costs

Schneider, Edward L.

May 1990

Escalating health care costs are an increasing concern for all levels of government. Health care costs keep rising because extreme government intervention has subsidized insurance companies and unregulated privatization of the medical industry. By the year 2040, the average life expectancy will rise to 85 years and above. The article states that the rapid growth of the oldest age groups will have a major impact on future health care costs. Great Britain has also been experiencing increasing health care costs when spending increased by nearly 48% on the British National Health Service

SLAPPing Accountability Out of the Public Sphere

Daniel Murphy, Lee Moerman

August 2018

This paper investigated the disruption to civic accountability by strategic corporate action in the form of SLAPP suits. The use of SLAPPs by corporations is dangerous to civic accountability because it has the potential of acquiring full political control over public discourse. This paper showed how corporations utilize these policies to prevent the public from expressing opposition to corporate behavior. Through strategically organized limitations, corporations impose control over public political discussion and protest. This is examined throughout the paper’s use of legal SLAPP cases. Through these investigations, the paper applies Jürgen Habermas’ theory of communicative action and the “public sphere,” to explore how SLAPPs function within a participatory democratic space and how they result in a “crisis of legitimacy” because of the ways in which they are able to exploit the legal system through SLAPP suits.

Political trust, ideology, and public support in the United States for government spending on health care.

Nurgul R. Aitalieva , Sinyoung Park

September 2018

Spending on health care has increased consistently over the last twenty to thirty years. Many advanced industrialized nations have universal health coverage; except for the United States. Lack of public trust in government threatened public support for government funding of health care. This article also goes over political ideology and attitudes. An argument that was brought up assumes policy attitudes are rooted in a general principle system. Research design and measurement are also key here when evaluating health care policies in the U.S.