Today, many federal assistance programs, like Food Stamps and housing subsidies, and block grants, like the Community Development Block Grants, are tied to the government’s official poverty line. Because of this, the official poverty line has real-world impact on people’s lives, especially the poor and near-poor.

The official poverty line, however, has become a less accurate indicator of economic need than when it was developed more than 50 years ago. In fact, the poverty line was actually flawed when it was first introduced. Yet, despite its growing inadequacy, the poverty line has remained largely unchanged even as the gap between poverty statistics and the realities of poor Americans has widened.

The poverty line’s primary flaw is that it only measures the capacity to consume. Does a household have enough money to pay for a basket of standard goods?

During the last half-century, however, many ideas have emerged about what it means to live a “good life.” These include things like good health, a person’s education level, their social relationships, and how safely and securely they live. The poverty line misses these critical elements of wellbeing. A new measurement is needed.

What You Need To Know

European and international organizations are leading the way in research on the multidimensional study of social wellbeing. Several influential proposals take measurements across a group of categories that includes things like access to education, ability to enter the labor market, health and social connection. A shortcoming of these models is that they only rate nations across these categories, not communities or individuals. Therefore, they focus on topics like labor market trends and public policy programs while ignoring local factors that exist closer to communities and individuals.

A model developed at the University of Pennsylvania, in collaboration with Reinvestment Fund, a community development financial institution, combines elements of the European approach with more fine-grained data to create a neighborhood-based measure of wellbeing. The approach is currently being used to analyze wellbeing in Philadelphia and New York City. The model analyzes:

  • Economic wellbeing
  • Economic and ethnic diversity
  • School effectiveness
  • Housing burden
  • Social connection
  • Security
  • Health
  • Environment
  • Political voice

Many of these categories are aspects of wellbeing that are missed by the traditional approach to poverty. With this more comprehensive, neighborhood-based model, national and local leaders can develop more effective strategies for alleviating poverty and improving wellbeing locally.

Download PDF of Key Points

Focusing on Social Wellbeing, Not Poverty

Taking a broader view of wellbeing can have direct positive impact on neighborhoods.

Imagine two low-income communities with official poverty rates twice the national average. In one community, private and public resources have been mobilized to improve the public environment (more trees and public spaces), improve the health of residents (reduced obesity, hypertension, and low-weight births), and increase the sense of trust and belonging among residents. In the other community, none of this has happened. Although both communities would still be considered low-income, the resources available to improve the quality of life would be much higher in the first community.

Measuring and focusing on social wellbeing would provide a more accurate reading of neighborhoods’ assets and challenges and improve our ability to identify the right strategies for addressing those challenges.

To support the SP2 Penn Top 10 project and the social justice and policy issues it seeks to address through public forums, online courses, and more, please click here.

Together, we can educate, enlighten, and empower.

Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Jodi

You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be actually something which I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and very broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it! Feel free to visit my page solarbet คาสิโนออนไลน์

Consuelo

This blog was... how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I've found something that helped me. Appreciate it! my web blog ... online gambling games

Mitch

I all the time used to study article in news papers but now as I am a user of internet so from now I am using net for content, thanks to web. Here is my web blog - online casino Korea

Fidelia

Stunning story there. What happened after? Take care! Here is my website :: CertsTime

Catherine

Thank you for sharing your info. I really appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your further post thank you once again. my website; fun 88

Christa

I'm not sure why but this site is loading extremely slow for me. Is anyone else having this issue or is it a problem on my end? I'll check back later on and see if the problem still exists. Feel free to surf to my homepage ... แทง พนัน ออนไลน์

Marisol

Fun88 Casino is currently the best casino to play the virtual slots. The staff is friendly and the games are of high quality. If you like casino games with good playing conditions, then this is the best way to be able to do so. Some of the games that are included in the website include the ones from the european slots, Blackjack, Roulette, Video Poker, Bingo, Mahjong, Baccarat, Craps, Hawaiian poker, Pai Gow Poker, Hearts, Slots, Saunas, etc. They also have a lot of bonuses available for you to enjoy. You get a chance to win big money playing the Fun888 by redeeming your points for free bingo cards or points to play a game. The bonus is great if you want to spend some time relaxing before you go to work, party, or out on a date. And the discounts they offer to their players make it possible for them to enjoy more. click our site at baomaweb.com My website: fun88 ทางเข้า 2020

Cyrus

I have learn a few excellent stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how a lot effort you put to make the sort of excellent informative web site. Feel free to visit my webpage :: เดิมพัน fun88

Claudette

Hello, i think that i noticed you visited my website thus i got here to return the choose?.I'm trying to to find things to enhance my site!I guess its good enough to make use of some of your ideas!! My web site - fun88 mobile

Isis

Just wish to say your article is as astounding. The clearness in your post is simply cool and i can assume you are an expert on this subject. Well with your permission allow me to grab your RSS feed to keep up to date with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please carry on the enjoyable work. Visit my page :: online casinos in the Philippines

May

This information is worth everyone's attention. Where can I find out more? Also visit my web site fun55

Bryce

It is the best time to make a few plans for the longer term and it is time to be happy. I have learn this post and if I may just I wish to counsel you some fascinating issues or advice. Maybe you could write next articles referring to this article. I want to learn more issues approximately it! Also visit my web page - Stop med at ryge

Michel

I do not know whether it's just me or if perhaps everybody else encountering issues with your website. It seems like some of the text on your content are running off the screen. Can someone else please comment and let me know if this is happening to them as well? This might be a issue with my web browser because I've had this happen before. Many thanks My web-site ... bokep tante

Trisha

I think this is one of the most vital information for me. And i am glad reading your article. But wanna remark on some general things, The web site style is ideal, the articles is really nice : D. Good job, cheers Take a look at my webpage fun88 มือถือ

Horacio

I believe what you posted was very logical. But, think on this, what if you added a little content? I am not suggesting your information isn't solid., however suppose you added something that makes people desire more? I mean Moving Beyond Poverty as the Main Indicator of Social Wellbeing - SP2 is a little plain. You ought to peek at Yahoo's front page and watch how they create article titles to grab viewers to open the links. You might add a video or a picture or two to get people interested about everything've got to say. Just my opinion, it would make your website a little bit more interesting. Take a look at my page - casino online bonuses

Sherita

I do not even know how I finished up here, but I thought this publish was once good. I do not know who you're however definitely you're going to a well-known blogger for those who are not already. Cheers! My homepage: casino online games

Brodie

Hey I know this is off topic but I was wondering if you knew of any widgets I could add to my blog that automatically tweet my newest twitter updates. I've been looking for a plug-in like this for quite some time and was hoping maybe you would have some experience with something like this. Please let me know if you run into anything. I truly enjoy reading your blog and I look forward to your new updates. Stop by my webpage - Fatboy hundeseng

Winifred

You're so awesome! I don't suppose I have read a single thing like that before. So wonderful to find someone with genuine thoughts on this subject matter. Really.. thank you for starting this up. This web site is something that is required on the internet, someone with a little originality! Visit my page: online casino philippine peso

Serena

Thanks for a marvelous posting! I really enjoyed reading it, you may be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and will often come back from now on. I want to encourage you to ultimately continue your great writing, have a nice holiday weekend! Here is my web site - live casino online philippines

Sidney

Elton

I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here. The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an edginess over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come more formerly again since exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this increase. Feel free to surf to my blog post; Størrelsesguide hundeseng

Shayna

I enjoy reading through a post that can make men and women think. Also, many thanks for allowing for me to comment! My blog - ดูหนังออนไลน์ฟรี; https://www.gspabudva.Com,

Maryanne

I love what you guys are usually up too. Such clever work and exposure! Keep up the fantastic works guys I've included you guys to our blogroll. My site - berita olahraga

Refugio

Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thank you, However I am experiencing problems with your RSS. I don't understand the reason why I cannot join it. Is there anybody else getting the same RSS issues? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanks!! my blog post - Online Casino Bonuses (casinobonus770.com)

Veronique

Admiring the time and effort you put into your blog and in depth information you provide. It's nice to come across a blog every once in a while that isn't the same outdated rehashed information. Excellent read! I've saved your site and I'm adding your RSS feeds to my Google account. Visit my webpage poker Thailand

Reagan

Greate article. Keep posting such kind of info on your page. Im really impressed by it. Hi there, You've done a fantastic job. I'll definitely digg it fun and fancy free 1947 in my view suggest to my friends. I am sure they'll be benefited from this site.

Miriam

Great beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your web site, how can i subscribe for a blog website? The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered brilliant clear concept My blog post: xe tai isuzu 5 tan (xetaihoangkim.com)

Reyna

Greetings! Very useful advice within this article! It's the little changes that will make the most significant changes. Many thanks for sharing! my blog post ... college essay

Chante

This is my first time pay a visit at here and i am truly impressed to read all at alone place. My site zprava

Sarah

Good day! I could have sworn I've been to this website before but after browsing through some of the posts I realized it's new to me. Anyways, I'm definitely happy I stumbled upon it and I'll be book-marking it and checking back regularly! Stop by my blog post :: agen slot joker terbaik

Susan

great issues altogether, you simply won a new reader. What may you suggest in regards to your post that you simply made a few days ago? Any certain? my web site; House Doctor toiletpapirholder

Samual

Hi, Neat post. There's a problem along with your web site in internet explorer, may test this? IE still is the market leader and a huge part of other folks will miss your magnificent writing because of this problem. Review my page: sportbrandlline

Elizabeth

I simply could not depart your web site prior to suggesting that I actually enjoyed the standard information an individual supply for your guests? Is gonna be back regularly to investigate cross-check new posts Visit my blog post; hethongdailyhino

Lucie

Lucia

I constantly spent my half an hour to read this blog's posts daily along with a mug of coffee. Feel free to visit my site - game slot deposit pulsa

Marlene

Wonderful web site. Plenty of useful information here. I'm sending it to some buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious. And certainly, thank you in your sweat! Look at my web-site fun88 bet

Trisha

Thanks for another informative blog. Where else may I am getting that kind of information written in such a perfect manner? I have a challenge that I am simply now operating on, and I've been on the look out for such information. my website; situs togel

Brigitte

This blog was... how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something which helped me. Many thanks! my blog :: fun places in columbus ohio (Theda)

Lorene

I feel that is one of the most important information for me. And i am glad studying your article. But want to statement on few common things, The website taste is wonderful, the articles is in point of fact nice : D. Good activity, cheers my webpage :: cờ bạc trực Tuyến

Olivia

Right here is the right website for anybody who really wants to find out about this topic. You realize so much its almost tough to argue with you (not that I actually would want to…HaHa). You certainly put a brand new spin on a subject that's been written about for a long time. Excellent stuff, just wonderful! Here is my web site online casino Philippines

Julianne

Right here is the perfect blog for everyone who wants to understand this topic. You know so much its almost tough to argue with you (not that I actually will need to…HaHa). You certainly put a fresh spin on a topic which has been written about for years. Excellent stuff, just excellent! Feel free to visit my web blog ... slot online Deposit pulsa tanpa potongan

Senaida

Hello there! This post could not be written much better! Going through this article reminds me of my previous roommate! He continually kept preaching about this. I will forward this article to him. Fairly certain he's going to have a good read. Many thanks for sharing! Also visit my homepage; Philippine sports betting

Normand

Hurrah, that's what I was searching for, what a stuff! existing here at this weblog, thanks admin of this site. Here is my web site :: Sports betting

Lashay

Thanks for the good writeup. It in truth was a entertainment account it. Glance advanced to far brought agreeable from you! By the way, how can we be in contact? my blog post :: Sports Betting Philippines

Troy

Hmm is anyone else having problems with the images on this blog loading? I'm trying to figure out if its a problem on my end or if it's the blog. Any responses would be greatly appreciated. Feel free to surf to my web site: 온라인 카지노 (Https://Sexybet99.Com/)

Hai

Wow, that's what I was looking for, what a information! present here at this weblog, thanks admin of this site. Also visit my homepage: Skincare

Dacia

WOW just what I was looking for. Came here by searching for green angelica Also visit my blog - Cosmetic

Sanford

Hi there, I enjoy reading through your post. I like to write a little comment to support you. Feel free to surf to my web page ... fun888 ทางเข้า

Celia

wonderful points altogether, you just received a brand new reader. What might you suggest in regards to your publish that you made a few days in the past? Any certain? Here is my homepage :: fun88 ทางเข้า

Zoila

It's an amazing article for all the web viewers; they will take advantage from it I am sure. Also visit my web site Fun8888Bet

Mable

Hi there very cool website!! Man .. Beautiful .. Wonderful .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds additionally? I am satisfied to seek out numerous helpful info here in the publish, we need work out more techniques on this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . . my blog post :: đánh giá nhà cái

Elaine

Moges Ambaw

please show me the
mark-dicarlo-sp2
About the author

Mark J. Stern, PhD

Dr. Mark Stern is Kenneth L. M. Pray Professor of Social Policy and History and Co-Director of the Urban Studies Program at the University of Pennsylvania. An historian by training, Stern has taught social welfare policy since 1980. Stern holds a Ph.D. in history from York University in Toronto, Canada, and a B.A. from Reed College in Portland, Oregon.