The Enduring Challenge of Concentrated Poverty in America:
Case Studies from Communities Across the U.S.
The need for a deeper understanding of the relationship between poverty, people, and place led the Federal Reserve to join with the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program in developing this research effort to examine concentrated poverty in a variety of contexts, including immigrant gateway, Native American, urban, and rural communities. The resulting report, The Enduring Challenge of Concentrated Poverty in America: Case Studies from Communities Across the U.S., contains case studies, undertaken by the Federal Reserve System's Community Affairs Offices, of 16 high-poverty communities across the United States.
Visit the report website to read about other case study communities.
Download Full Report (PDF 6.8MB)
Fresno, California: the West Fresno neighborhood
The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s case study site is West Fresno. In 2005, Fresno was ranked in a report by the Brookings Institution as the city with the highest rate of concentrated poverty in the nation, exceeding that even of New Orleans. Interviews with stakeholders revealed long-standing socio-economic challenges in West Fresno, including patterns of public and private disinvestment, low-performing schools, high unemployment rates, and limitations in organizational capacity to address community needs. It’s also a neighborhood around which city-wide resources are beginning to be mobilized. As in all the communities in which we work, we plan to be an active partner in efforts to promote neighborhood reinvestment and reconnect residents to economic opportunity. Read More