In an effort to gain deeper understanding about the role housing plays in the well-being of children and communities, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation has awarded  $5.6 million in grants for nine different studies.

“MacArthur’s support for these research efforts will arm policymakers, housing and social service providers with evidence about the long-term implications of housing programs and policies,” said Michael Stegman, director of policy and housing, in a statement.

Selected from a pool of 150 applicants, the nine selected projects will receive funding under the Foundation’s $25 million initiative on “How Housing Matters to Families and Communities.” The initiative is based on the premise that stable, affordable housing is an essential platform that promotes positive outcomes in education, employment, and physical health by helping to ensure a greater return from other social and public investments.

This is the second round of grants made through the Foundation’s competitive housing research initiative.

The nine grant recipients will conduct various studies on the relationship between housing and a series of social and economic concerns, including education, health, and economic opportunity:

  • Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City—$1 million to study the role subsidized housing plays in the education, financial, and physical health of children and families;
  • Boston College—$900,000 to study the impact of low-income families’ housing decisions on children’s well-being;
  • New York University—$800,000 to study the impact of housing instability due to foreclosure on school performance;
  • The University of Maryland—$700,000 to model the impact of housing subsidies on children’s future participation in the labor force;
  • RAND Corp.—$600,000 to study whether social networks are a key pathway through which low-income residents realize the social and economic benefits of living in mixed-income housing or neighborhoods;
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison—$600,000 to study the effects of federal and state income support policies on homeownership stability and child maltreatment;
  • Brown University—$500,000 to support a study on the relationship between compulsory savings and homeownership in Mexico and on the effects of homeownership on formal labor market participation;
  • Harvard University—$300,000 to study the long-term social, psychological, and economic implications of eviction; and
  • University of Chicago—$200,000 for a study on the impact of childhood housing instability on long-term health and education outcomes.

MacArthur will offer a third round of competitive funding this year, with details coming to the Foundation’s Web site,, no later than March.