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Issues in Focus

magnifying glassThe Urban Institute is engaged in research on many pressing issues of the day.  Issues in Focus provides facts and findings on a sampling of programs and topics of particular relevance to policymakers, researchers, and other interested parties. Current issues include:



After Hurricane Katrina After Katrina

When the storms of September 2005 compounded New Orleans' old problems and swept in some new, Urban Institute researchers—who have studied urban blights for nearly 40 years—began charting paths out of devastation to rebuild a social infrastructure and a model for other cities.


Changing Domestic PrioritiesChanging Domestic Priorities

In 1981, the Urban Institute initiated a major research project, Changing Domestic Priorities. This project examined the shifts in the nation's economic and social policies under the Reagan administration and analyzed the effects of these changes on people, places, and institutions.


Disability and EmploymentDisability and Employment

Work is one key to a fuller life for people with disabilities, which is why we probe this tangled web of policies and programs


Gay and Lesbian DemographicsGay and Lesbian Demographics

Family structure, both conventional and unconventional, is one of the many issues explored by the Center on Labor, Human Services, and Population. Researchers delve into issues on same-sex marriage, Census 2000's method of counting gay men and lesbians, the link between social tolerance and a city's high-tech industry success, and more.


Opportunity and Ownership ProjectOpportunity and Ownership Project

Given the chance, many low-income families can acquire assets and become more financially secure.


Welfare Reform: Ten Years Later Welfare Reform: Ten Years Later

Ending welfare as we knew it has required ever-more-diligent research on policies to reduce poverty and on outcomes for children.