Motherhood, Graduate School, and Other Juggling Acts
1021 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA - SPIA meeting room
Feb 17 6:15 pm EST Join us at 6:15-7:15pm - everyone is welcome. https://drive.google.com/a/vt.edu/file/d/0B1IkvxKojMoXeFhxUHJpYzBJSXM/view?usp=sharing
Effects of Information on the Decision to Obtain a Reverse Mortgage: Evidence from a Federal Policy Change
Feb 18 6:00 pm EST Metropolitan Institute is happy to present the 2016 Spring MI + SPIA Speaker Series for more information visit us at https://www.mi.vt.edu/2016-spring-speaker-series/ Lecturer: Stephanie Moulton, Associate Professor and Director of Doctoral Studies, Ohio State University Virginia Tech Research Center in Ballston, 900 N. Glebe Road, Arlington, VA Thursday, February 18, 2016 Doors open at 6pm Lecture begins at 6:30pm Light refreshments will be available. Synopsis: The U.S. Department of Housing & Urban Development’s Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program is designed to allow seniors to extract equity from their home without home sale. As a complex financial instrument, federal policy requires potential borrowers to received independent counseling prior to submitting a loan application. Little is known about the effectiveness on the information provided through counseling on the senior’s decision to obtain a reverse mortgage. In this study, we exploit a policy change in October of 2010 that substantially altered the content of the counseling session. Our data span the period prior to and after the policy change and thus we test for its effects on the application rate for HECMs and on applicants’ characteristics. We find that enhanced counseling is associated with a reduced likelihood of obtaining a HECM, and that this effect is largely explained by information provided about eligibility for public benefits. In addition to informing the design of policies regarding reverse mortgages, our analysis informs important policy questions about the effects of mandated information on complex consumer decisions. RSVP before 2-15-2016 at https://reverse-mortgage.eventbrite.com
Low-Stress Bike Networks: Can You Get from Here to There on a Low Stress Route?
Mar 08 6:00 pm EST Metropolitan Institute is happy to present the 2016 Spring MI + SPIA Speaker Series for more information visit us at https://www.mi.vt.edu/2016-spring-speaker-series/ Lecturer: Peter Furth, Professor, Northeastern University Virginia Tech Research Center in Ballston, 900 N Glebe Road, Arlington, VA Tuesday, March 8, 2016 Doors open at 6pm Lecture begins at 6:30pm Light refreshments will be available. Synopsis: A prerequisite to mass bicycling — something that can offer substantial societal benefits in the domains of health, environment, congestion, and quality of line — is routes with low traffic stress connecting people’s homes to their destinations. In the US, many bike lanes and so-called bike routes expose riders to far more traffic stress than they are willing to tolerate. If one pares a city’s or region’s bike network down to the paths that have low traffic stress, the result will often be a sparse and discontinuous set of segments that can hardly be used to get from here to there. In one city, for example, we find that for only about 5 percent of home-to-work pairs is it possible to get from home to work on a bike without either using a high-stress link or making an excessively large detour; with a targeted set of investments, that fraction could be multiplied several times. Creating a network of connected low-stress routes should be the focus and goal of bicycle infrastructure development. But what qualifies as “low-stress?” And what makes for a good network? The first part of this talk will describe criteria for low traffic stress that have been developed based on successful experiences in the Netherlands and elsewhere in promoting mass cycling. The second part will describe methods for mapping and evaluating existing and proposed networks of low-stress routes in terms of connectivity or accessibility, with applications from San Jose, Boston, and Delaware. RSVP before 3-6-2016 at https://bike-networks.eventbrite.com.