Scott W. Allard

Professor of Public Affairs, Daniel J. Evans School, University of Washington
Co-Director, Family Self-Sufficiency Data Center, University of Chicago
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Areas of Expertise:

About Scott

Allard’s research and teaching expertise are in the areas of poverty and social welfare policy in the United States. He is currently working on projects exploring how families have coped with job loss in the wake of the Great Recession, the suburbanization of poverty, and the impact of the recession on social service agencies and nonprofits. Allard is a Nonresidential Senior Fellow at The Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program and a Faculty Research Affiliate of the National Poverty Center at the University of Michigan. Allard has worked with a number of public and nongovernmental organizations examining issues of poverty and safety-net provision in the Chicago Metropolitan Area.

In the News

"Commentary: Poverty Is Up in Suburbs; Here’s What’s Causing It," Scott W. Allard, Herald Net, June 8, 2018.
Scott W. Allard quoted by Alieza Durana, "The Suburban Mystique" Slate Magazine, March 19, 2018.
Scott W. Allard's research on poverty levels discussed by Adrienne Fawcett, "Poverty on the Rise in Lake County, North Shore," The Daily North Shore, February 8, 2018.
Scott W. Allard quoted , "Lake Country Community Foundation Holds Poverty Awareness Event" Chicago Daily Herald, January 26, 2018.
Scott W. Allard quoted by Yadira Sanchez Olson, "Author Says 'Misunderstandings and Biases' Lead to Rise in Poverty across Lake County" Chicago Tribune, January 23, 2018.
Scott W. Allard quoted by Tim Foley, "Fighting Misinformation, Grooming New Leaders, and Unlocking More Giving: Ideas for 2018" The Chronicle of Philanthropy, January 2, 2018.
"Ferris Bueller's Daily Grind: How Poverty in Chicago Went Suburban," Scott W. Allard, The Guardian, July 14, 2017.
Interview on the distribution of poverty Scott W. Allard, Pacific Standard, June 26, 2017.
Scott W. Allard quoted on hidden poverty in suburbia by Michelle Chen, "Why are America’s Suburbs Becoming Poorer?" The Nation, June 22, 2017.
Scott W. Allard quoted on critical assistance provided by nonprofits, "Nonprofits are Now Too Critical to Fail" The Huffington Post, July 8, 2012.
"Life in the ‘burbs’ isn’t as Sweet as It Used to Be," Scott W. Allard, KPCC - Southern California Public Radio, October 26, 2011.
Scott W. Allard quoted on current dynamics of suburban populations, "Outside Cleveland, Snapshots of Poverty’s Surge in the Suburbs" New York Times, October 24, 2011.
Scott W. Allard quoted on suburban communities, "Poverty Pervades the Suburbs" CNN Money, September 23, 2011.
"Tackling Today’s Poverty with Yesterday’s Philanthropy," Scott W. Allard, The Avenue Blog, The New Republic, August 1, 2011.
Guest to discuss Out of Reach on C-SPAN Book TV, Scott W. Allard, June 4, 2011.
"The Suburban Poor," Scott W. Allard (with Elizabeth Kneebone), Next American City Podcast, October 10, 2010.


"Strained Suburbs: The Social Service Challenges of Rising Suburban Poverty," (with Benjamin Roth), The Brookings Institution, Metropolitan Opportunity Series , September 30, 2010.
Examines the limited capacity of many public and nonprofit social service programs in suburban communities to respond to significant increases in poverty within their communities over the past decade.
"Nonprofit Helping Hands for the Working Poor: The New Realities of Today's Safety Net" in Old Assumptions, New Realities, edited by Robert D. Plotnick, Marcia K. Meyers, Jennifer Romich, and Stephen Rathgeb Smith (Russell Sage Foundation, 2010), 187-213.
Highlights the key role played by nonprofit organizations in the contemporary safety net and the challenges of a system heavily reliant on publicly funded private providers of antipoverty assistance.
Out of Reach: Place, Poverty, and the New American Welfare State (Yale University Press, 2009).
Discusses implications of dramatic changes in the provision of safety net assistance in the last two decades away from welfare cash assistance and prioritizing community-based social service programs, with particular focus on how these changes limit access of high-poverty neighborhoods to safety net resources.
"Proximity and Opportunity: How Residence and Race Affect the Employment of Welfare Recipients" (with Sheldon Danziger). Housing Policy Debate 13, no. 4 (2003): 675-700.
Demonstrates how lack of access to employment opportunities shapes social welfare program participation and work outcomes among low-income female-headed households.