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"Center for Economic Information’s Neighborhood Housing Conditions Survey in Academic and Civil Context"

Center for Economic Information Working Paper 2301-03

There is a growing awareness that the condition of the built environment has a substantial impact on health. Systematic housing conditions surveys are a method for developing information about the physical condition of housing. This paper considers the Center for Economic Information’s (CEI) Neighborhood Housing Conditions Survey (NHCS) in light of other academic and civic housing conditions surveys. The paper also reviews the method and history of the NHCS. We find that housing conditions surveys are generally designed from scratch for each new research program, the process of translating survey results into policy remains under-developed in the scholarly literature, and heterogeneity between surveys reduces the ability to compare observations across space and time. The NHCS may address some of these issues, suitable as an “off the shelf” template, modifiable to suit programmatic needs and providing a baseline consistency across space and time.


Building Equity by Eliminating Lead Poisoning: Prospects for a Green New Deal Global institute for Sustainable Prosperity Working Paper 131

Pediatric lead poisoning is one of the most studied and persistent issues of environmental and racial injustice facing the United States. Great strides have been made at lowering pediatric blood lead levels in the aggregate since the NHANES began systematically tracking the problem in the late 1970’s but disparities continue to compound. Lead poisoning in children continues to take a disproportionate toll on African American, Hispanic, and poor neighborhoods. A successful Green New Deal must address environmental, racial, and economic justice. Confronting lead poisoning provides this opportunity while providing a robust return on investment (Gould 2009). This paper closes with 11 programs related to addressing this injustice and environmental problem. 1) restorative justice for adult survivors of pediatric lead poisoning. 2) Universal testing and tracing for pediatric lead poisoning. 3) Comprehensive lead-soil testing. 4) Provide necessary and ongoing support services for children identified as lead poisoned. 5) Safely removing lead paint from the exterior and interior of pre-1978 housing. 6) Lead service line replacement and the overhaul of ageing municipal water infrastructure. 7) Remediation of lead in soil. 8) Develop effective and safe recycling strategies for lead loaded products. 9) Prevent the continual poisoning of children through closer oversight of consumer products. 10) Continued development of alternative-to-lead battery technologies. 11) Adequate nutrition for children and expectant mothers. If the Green New Deal does not build the equity in disadvantaged communities, it will fail.



"Modeling Childhood Blood Lead Levels with Detailed Housing Characteristics" Center for Economic Information Working Paper 1801-03

Not available online

A linear regression model is estimated for severity of childhood blood lead level. Data are from individual observations of blood lead level that are address matched to the Center for Economic Information's survey of exterior housing conditions. Controls for age of housing, and proximity to housing demolitions are included in the model. Preliminary results point to a statistically significant impact of deteriorated exterior paint, as well as age of housing and proximity to housing demolitions.




"An Iterative Approach to the Parcel Level Address Geocoding of a Large Health Dataset to a Shifting Household Geography" co-authored with Ben Wilson.

Center for Economic Information Working Paper 1702-01

This article details an iterative process for the address geocoding of a large collection of health encounters (n = 242,804) gathered over a 13 year period to a parcel geography which varies by year. This procedure supports an investigation of the relationship between basic housing conditions and the corresponding health of occupants. Successful investigation of this relationship necessitated matching individuals, their health outcomes and their home environments. This match process may be useful to researchers in a variety of fields with particular emphasis on predictive modeling and up-stream medicine.

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