Supporting Neighborhood Choice to Promote Economic Mobility
Low-income families are concentrated in neighborhoods with low levels of economic opportunity and mobility. To explore why, economist Raj Chetty and his team at Opportunity Insights tested reducing the barriers to moving to high-opportunity neighborhoods for families receiving housing vouchers in Seattle and King County. Families who received services like short-term financial assistance, landlord engagement, and customized search assistance moved to high-upward-mobility neighborhoods at a rate of 54 percent compared to 14 percent for the control group. The results of the randomized controlled trial suggest that lowering the barriers to moving can promote economic integration and upward mobility.