Health at a Living Wage: Evidence from Natural Experiments

The goal of this project is to assess the effects of living wage (LW) policies on the health and wellbeing of low-income adults. The investigators leverage natural experiments in LW policy adoption across metro areas in two population-based, longitudinal studies: the Community Tracking Study and the CARDIA Cohort Study. Evidence generated can inform municipal policy reforms (e.g. city-wide minimum wage) that are gaining significant traction across cities as a means to improve equity in living and working conditions for their populations. The project will also demonstrate the feasibility of placing health as a front-and-center objective for social and economic policy.


Health & well-being: material and psychological well-being; allostatic load biomarkers; self-rated health status; BMI; and smoking, drinking, and dietary behavior

Other: Medical care access


Difference-in-difference-in-differences design to generate quasi-experimental, intention-to-treat estimates of LW policy effects.

A balanced scale with money on one side and a family on the other
Grantee and Partner organizations

Joseph J. Zilber School of Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Grant status
In Progress
Principal investigators
Mustafa Hussein, PhD
Start date
Award amount
24 months

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