Category Archives: Rural Issues

News Coverage: ‘This Is All We Can Afford’: Shrinking Lives in the English Countryside

News Coverage: Ceylan Yeginsu, ‘This Is All We Can Afford’: Shrinking Lives in the English Countryside, N.Y. Times, May 13, 2019 [Includes good photos.]

New Blog Post: From Gentrification to Decline: How Neighborhoods Really Change

concentration of povertyNew Blog Post: Tanvi Misra, From Gentrification to Decline: How Neighborhoods Really Change, CityLab.com, Apr. 10, 2019.

New Article: Returns to Community Lending

New Article: Indraneel Chakraborty, et. al, Returns to Community Lending, available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3353786.  Abstract below:

For forty years, at a large scale, the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) has encouraged U.S. banks to lend to lower income neighborhoods. We estimate costs and benefits of providing incentives to privately-owned banks to reduce poverty. Regarding costs, to comply with CRA, rather than lend more overall, banks perfectly substitute away from small business lending to other income groups. Regarding benefits, 0.5% of the population is lifted out of poverty per year through the CRA small-business lending channel. The incidence of the act is on smaller banks who lend more and face higher loan losses. Large banks show no effects.

News Coverage of Poverty: India’s poor don’t want money — they want health care

News Coverage of Poverty: Kelsey Piper, India’s poor don’t want money — they want health care, Vox.com, Apr. 12, 2019.

New Blog Post: How ‘Heartland Visas’ Could Reduce Geographic Inequality

heartland visas.jpgNew Blog Post: Richard Florida, How ‘Heartland Visas’ Could Reduce Geographic Inequality, CityLab.com, Apr. 11, 2019.

New Blog Post: The Utter Inadequacy of America’s Efforts to Desegregate Schools

desegregationNew Blog Post: Alana Semuels, The Utter Inadequacy of America’s Efforts to Desegregate Schools, CityLab.com, Apr. 12, 2019.

New Article: Early adversity in rural India impacts the brain networks underlying visual working memory

New Article: Sobanawartiny Wijeakumar, et. al, Early adversity in rural India impacts the brain networks underlying visual working memory, Wiley Online Lib. (2019).  Abstract below:

There is a growing need to understand the global impact of poverty on early brain and behavioural development, particularly with regard to key cognitive processes that emerge in early development. Although the impact of adversity on brain development can trap children in an intergenerational cycle of poverty, the massive potential for brain plasticity is also a source of hope: reliable, accessible, culturally agnostic methods to assess early brain development in low resource settings might be used to measure the impact of early adversity, identify infants for timely intervention and guide the development and monitor the effectiveness of early interventions. Visual working memory (VWM) is an early marker of cognitive capacity that has been assessed reliably in early infancy and is predictive of later academic achievement in Western countries. Here, we localized the functional brain networks that underlie VWM in early development in rural India using a portable neuroimaging system, and we assessed the impact of adversity on these brain networks. We recorded functional brain activity as young children aged 4–48 months performed a VWM task. Brain imaging results revealed localized activation in the frontal cortex, replicating findings from a Midwestern US sample. Critically, children from families with low maternal education and income showed weaker brain activity and poorer distractor suppression in canonical working memory areas in the left frontal cortex. Implications of this work are far‐reaching: it is now cost‐effective to localize functional brain networks in early development in low‐resource settings, paving the way for novel intervention and assessment methods.

New Blog Post: Your Public Lands Are Killing You

New Blog Post: Timothy Egan, Your Public Lands Are Killing You, NYTimes.com, Mar. 29, 2019.

New Book: Out in the Rural: A Mississippi Health Center and Its War on Poverty

out in the rural.jpgNew Book: Thomas J. Ward, Out in the Rural: A Mississippi Health Center and Its War on Poverty (2016).  Overview below:

Ward (Black Physicians in the Jim Crow South), chair of the history department at Spring Hill College (Ala.), celebrates the nation’s first rural community health center and its groundbreaking mission to provide medical care and be “an instrument of social change” in the impoverished Mississippi Delta region. In this densely packed chronicle, Ward covers the growth of the Tufts-Delta Health Center from a small health clinic in 1967—opening amid skepticism from both black and white communities—to its unique role as a medical center and organizer of programs addressing rampant malnutrition, poor maternal and child healthcare, unsafe drinking water and sewage disposal, and hunger. Woven throughout are vivid portraits of the clinic’s founders, including H. Jack Geiger, the “father of community health”; community organizer John Hatch; environmental services director Andrew James; and farm expert L.C. Dorsey. Ward argues that the center’s true measure of success is its enduring legacy as one of the first of “more than 1,200 community health centers in the U.S.” Ward shows that “in both practical and symbolic terms, the Tufts-Delta Health Center was a radical assault on both the medical and social status quo”—and that story is as urgent today as it was a half century ago.

Symposium: Elie Hirschfeld Symposium on Child Welfare: Co-Sponsored by the Family Defense Clinic and the Review of Law and Social Change

Symposium: Elie Hirschfeld Symposium on Child Welfare: Co-Sponsored by the Family Defense Clinic and the Review of Law and Social Change, video available here.

The first annual Elie Hirschfeld Symposium on Child Welfare was held on Thursday, January 24th in Greenberg Lounge from 5-8pm.  The symposium was co-sponsored by NYU’s Family Defense Clinic and the Review of Law and Social Change.  Three distinguished panelists discussed racial injustice and the child welfare system, with moderation by Chris Gottlieb.  The symposium closed with an open discussion with the audience followed by a reception.