Defining Economic Insecurity

CHEFS will work to define the scope of the insecurity faced by working Americans by studying economic risks and the supports or lack of supports offered in the American workplace across the income spectrum and across the life course.  


Faculty Research

Transcripts of Testimony Before the Ways and Means Committee, Jacob Hacker, January 31, 2007

Jacob Hacker Reveals Risks of Stock-Invested Retirement Plans, The Washington Post, October 12, 2008

Transcript of Testimony Before the Committe on Edcation and Labor,  Jacob Hacker, October 22, 2008

CHEFS Projects

The Rockefeller Economic Security Index.  Professor Jacob Hacker, professor of political science and author of “The Great Risk Shift” (Oxford University Press, 2006), is leading a team of researchers to create the Rockefeller Economic Security Index (RESI). The RESI will gauge changes in Americans' exposure to economic risk over time, looking at all segments of the U.S. population.    This index will build on the best existing research to define the dimensions of economic security, and will provide an authoritative source that illustrates both how and in what respects economic security varies over time and across social groups.  The RESI will measure the economic fallout that people face from major economic shocks, such as job loss, sickness, and disability.  It will also examine the changing scope and generosity of public and private protections against these shocks—for example, employment-based health insurance and retirement pensions.  A distinguished group of economists from across the political spectrum serve as technical advisors to this project, including Henry Aaron, Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and Nobel Prize Laureate economist Robert Solow.

The initial findings of RESI will be released in the spring of 2009.