Alix Gould-Werth

Senior Policy Analyst, Washington Center for Equitable Growth
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About Alix

Gould-Werth is broadly interested in social mobility, participation in government social programs, and work. She received her PhD in Social Work and Sociology from the University of Michigan in 2015. Her dissertation research focused on racial and socioeconomic disparities surrounding job loss, Unemployment Insurance receipt, and downward mobility. She has been involved with a wide variety advocacy and social work organizations. Notable partners include: the Michigan Unemployment Insurance Project, the National Employment Law Project, Michigan United, the American Federation of Teachers- Michigan, Jewish Family Services of Washtenaw County, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice, and Fountain House, Inc.


How to Fix America's Broken Unemployment Benefits

    Alix Gould-Werth ,

In the News

Alix Gould-Werth quoted by Kalena Thomhave, "Washington State Shifts into New Ways of Thinking about Welfare and Transportation" The American Prospect, February 23, 2018.
Alix Gould-Werth's research on unemployment benefits for Latinos discussed by Roque Planas, "Latinos Less Likely to Receive Unemployment Insurance than Non-Hispanic Whites, Study Says," Huffington Post, December 19, 2012.


"A Study of the Self-Employment Assistance Program: Helping Unemployed Workers Pursue Self-Employment," (with Karen Needels, Elizabeth Weigensberg, Ankita Patnaik, and Joanne Lee), Mathematica Policy Research, January 11, 2017.

Examines outcomes of Self-Employment Assistance program participants and their businesses.

"Workplace Experiences and Unemployment Insurance Claims: How Personal Relationships and the Structure of Work Shape Access to Public Benefits" Social Service Review 90, no. 2 (2016): 305-352.

Demonstrates that workplace context plays a prominent role in Unemployment Insurance take-up. Using data from 45 qualitative interviews with a diverse group of workers who experienced job loss between 2007 and 2011, this study documents how the interpersonal climate at work prior to job loss, the environmental context at the time of job loss, and the structural arrangement of work interact with employee characteristics to impede or facilitate benefit access in a distinct manner.

"Do Alternative Base Periods Increase Unemployment Insurance Receipt Among Low-Educated Unemployed Workers?" (with H. Luke Shaefer). Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 32, no. 4 (2013): 835-852.
Evaluates a policy change that was incentivized using $7 billion of stimulus funding and designed to increase Unemployment Insurance receipt among disadvantaged groups by increasing program eligibility. Finds that the intervention primarily affected part-time workers without a high school diploma, who were 2.8 percentage points more likely to receive Unemployment Insurance when the intervention was in place.
"Unemployment Insurance Participation by Education and by Race and Ethnicity" (with H. Luke Shaefer). Monthly Labor Review 135, no. 10 (2012): 28-41.
Finds that disadvantaged unemployed workers (racial minorities and the less-educated) are less likely to apply for and – if they apply – receive Unemployment Insurance than their more advantaged counterparts.