NATO Seen Favorably Across Member States

NATO Seen Favorably Across Member States. Pew Research Center. Moira Fagan and Jacob Poushter. February 9, 2020

NATO is generally seen in a positive light across publics within the alliance, despite lingering tensions between the leaders of individual member countries. A median of 53% across 16 member countries surveyed have a favorable view of the organization, with only 27% expressing a negative view. But opinions of NATO and related issues vary widely across the countries surveyed, especially regarding the obligations of Article 5 of the 75-year-old treaty, which declares that an attack against one member nation is considered an attack against all members. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 29 pages].

What’s the Fed doing in response to the COVID-19 crisis? What more could it do?

What’s the Fed doing in response to the COVID-19 crisis? What more could it do? Brookings Institution. Jeffrey Cheng, Dave Skidmore, and David Wessel. March 23, 2020

This post will be updated throughout the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. It was most recently updated on March 31, 2020.

[HTML format, various paging].

OKFutures Needs Assessment: Oklahoma’s Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five

OKFutures Needs Assessment: Oklahoma’s Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five. Urban Institute. Erica Greenberg et al. January 27, 2020.

The importance of quality early childhood care and education (ECCE) is increasingly visible across the country. ECCE affects children’s growth and development, families’ ability to work, and the future health of society. This has inspired federal support for states to create extensive, multi-year plans to serve children and families more effectively. Though the quality and availability of ECCE have become priorities for many states, there are still gaps in how children and families access programs and the resources they provide.
Oklahoma is a national leader in ECCE and is working to illuminate and address unmet need through OKFutures. This paper provides a comprehensive assessment of need across the ECCE mixed delivery system with a focus on programs that directly provide ECCE: universal prekindergarten, Head Start and Early Head Start, American Indian and Alaska Native (AIAN) Head Start and Early Head Start, Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships, Educare, Oklahoma child care, and tribal child care. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 117 pages].

Internet Regimes and WTO E-Commerce Negotiations

Internet Regimes and WTO E-Commerce Negotiations. Congressional Research Service. Rachel F. Fefer. January 28, 2020.

From retail to agriculture or healthcare, digitization has affected all sectors and allowed more industries to engage with customers and partners around the globe. Many U.S. companies thrived in the initial online environment, which lacked clear rules and guidelines, quickly expanding their offerings and entering foreign markets. As the internet has evolved, however, governments have begun to impose national laws and regulations to pursue data protection, data security, privacy, and other policy objectives. The lack of global rules and norms for data and digital trade is leading to differences in these domestic internet regimes. Competing internet regimes and conflicting data governance rules increase trade barriers and limit investment flows and international commerce, restricting the ability of U.S. businesses and consumers to enter and compete in some markets. For example, foreign internet regimes may use national security regulations to block cross-border data flows, disrupting global supply chains and limiting the potential use of and gains from emerging technologies. The creation of national technology standards can also limit market access by foreign firms.
As the digital economy expands, the diversity in digital rules is poised to grow in complexity and create new trade restrictions. The resulting patchwork of technical standards and national systems creates challenges for international trade, and may signal an impending fracturing of the global internet. Without agreement on global norms or common trade rules, some analysts foresee a splitting of the internet into distinct nation-led “dataspheres” and virtual trading blocs.

[PDF format, 29 pages].

Next Generation Urban Planning: Enabling Sustainable Development at the Local Level through Voluntary Local Reviews (VLRs)

Next Generation Urban Planning: Enabling Sustainable Development at the Local Level through Voluntary Local Reviews (VLRs). Brookings Institution. Anthony F. Pipa and Max Bouchet. February 9, 2020

Around the world, cities are evolving at an unprecedented pace, grappling with profound challenges driven by urbanization, demographics, and climate change. City leaders face extraordinary pressures to manage this growth and implement sustainable development strategies. As United Nations (U.N.) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recently remarked, “With more than half the world’s population, cities are on the frontlines of sustainable and … inclusive development.”

Global trends of rapid urbanization exacerbate the local urgency for sustainable development. Climate change and migration have very localized effects that require localized solutions. The risk to physical and civic infrastructures, and social cohesion and safety, creates new complexity for local governments. Cities are also where inequality takes on a visible human face, with rich and poor physically intermingling, bound together by place and economic and social relationships. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 38 pages].

Playbook for Guiding Diners Toward Plant-Rich Dishes in Food Service

Playbook for Guiding Diners Toward Plant-Rich Dishes in Food Service. World Resources Institute. Sophie Attwood et al. January 2020

Producing beef emits 20 times more greenhouse gases than common plant-based proteins, which is why shifting diets toward containing less beef, and more plants, is an important climate action. To help food service companies support diners in choosing more plant-rich meals, this playbook from WRI’s Better Buying Lab outlines the top 23 ‘behavior change’ strategies drawing on cutting edge academic research into how people choose food, as well as insights from experts in the food service industry about what works and what doesn’t.

The playbook is designed to be used by anyone working in the food service sector wishing to make changes within their operations to encourage diners to choose more sustainable, plant-rich options — including chefs, food servers, managers, sales people, marketing and communications professionals, food operators, distributors, researchers, nutritionists, dieticians, and procurement teams. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 80 pages].
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A New Approach to Examining Disability: How the WD-FAB Could Improve SSA’s Processes and Help People with Disabilities Stay Employed

A New Approach to Examining Disability: How the WD-FAB Could Improve SSA’s Processes and Help People with Disabilities Stay Employed. Urban Institute. Diane Brandt, Jack Smalligan. December 17, 2019

The National Institutes of Health, in collaboration with Boston University, developed a new tool for assessing individual functional ability with funding from the Social Security Administration (SSA). The tool, called the Work Disability–Functional Assessment Battery (WD-FAB), uses item response theory and computer adaptive testing to quickly interview people and systematically map physical and mental health functioning.
In this paper, we provide background on the WD-FAB and explore two ways it could improve the delivery of services to people with disabilities. First, the instrument could provide SSA with a more complete understanding of an applicant’s self-reported functional abilities and limitations. SSA could use those insights to improve the disability determination process for those applying for disability benefits. Second, the instrument could help federal, state, and local programs identify interventions for people who need return-to-work services.
The WD-FAB offers an opportunity to leverage advances in approaches to integrate functional information into the assessment of work disability using comprehensive, efficient technologies to capture self-reported functioning. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 12 pages].

Schools of the Future: Defining New Models of Education for the Fourth Industrial Revolution

Schools of the Future: Defining New Models of Education for the Fourth Industrial Revolution. World Economic Forum. January 14, 2020.

As globalization and rapid advancements in technology continue to transform civic space and the world of work, education systems have grown increasingly disconnected from the realities and needs of global economies and societies. Education models must adapt to equip children with the skills to create a more inclusive, cohesive and productive world.
“Schools of the Future: Defining New Models of Education for the Fourth Industrial Revolution” outlines a new framework for defining quality education in the new economic and social context and shares key features of 16 schools, systems and programmes pioneering the future of education. These examples may serve as inspiration for driving holistic and transformative action on this important agenda. This paper is the result of a widely consultative process with educators, policy and business leaders, education technology developers and experts curated by the Platform for Shaping the Future of the New Economy and Society. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 34 pages].

Incorporating Two-Generation Approaches in Community Change

Incorporating Two-Generation Approaches in Community Change. Urban Institute. Susan J. Popkin et al. December 16, 2019.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation launched Family-Centered Community Change (FCCC) in 2012 to support three local partnerships seeking to help parents and children in high-poverty neighborhoods succeed together. These partnerships, located in Buffalo, New York; Columbus, Ohio; and San Antonio, Texas, are each developing a more integrated set of services, including housing assistance, high-quality education, and job training.
Since 2013, the Urban Institute has been evaluating each initiative’s design, implementation, and outcomes for families. The theory behind the demonstration is that “two-generation approaches,” or coordinating high-quality programs and services for children and parents, can help break intergenerational poverty and move families with low incomes toward greater economic independence. This paper is one of a series of reports based on what we have learned from five years of observations from our research.
The three FCCC initiatives provide services including early childhood education and child care, partnerships with local elementary schools, after-school care, employment and training for adults, financial education, and coaching to help parents set goals and stay on target. All three initiatives operate within communities where families move frequently and have widely varying needs and within neighborhoods with long histories of racial segregation and systemic racism, changing job markets, demographic changes, and gentrification. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 51 pages].

Organized Labor and The Employment Trajectories of Workers in Routine Jobs: Evidence from U.S. Panel Data

Organized Labor and the Employment Trajectories of Workers in Routine Jobs: Evidence from U.S. Panel Data. Brookings Institution. Zachary Parolin. January 14, 2020.

Technological change has contributed to declines in the employment shares of routine occupations, such as office clerks and industrial workers. Less clear, however, is whether organized labor mitigates the pace and consequences of technological change for workers in routine occupations. This study investigates the extent to which union membership affects the employment and earnings trajectories of workers in routine jobs. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) spanning 1970 to 2015, this study employs individual fixed effects and propensity score matching estimates to assess the effect of union membership on the likelihood that an adult in a routine job (1) remains employed in a routine job for a longer duration of time, (2) avoids unemployment, and (3) achieves higher earnings over time relative to non-unionized routine workers. The results demonstrate that union membership contributes to a 13 percentage point increase in the likelihood that a worker in a routine occupation remains in that occupation during the two decades after obtaining the job, a 5 percentage point decrease in the likelihood of becoming unemployed, and a 4 percentage point decrease in the likelihood of earning below 50 percent of national median earnings. Results are broadly consistent across decade, age group, race/ethnicity, sex, and level of educational attainment. The findings suggest that organized labor is an important actor in shaping the pace and social consequences of technological change. [Note: contains copyrighted information].

[PDF format, 30 pages].