DECEMBER  – Lila Rabinovich and Francisco Perez-Arce’s work exploring effects of Social Security claiming for partial retirees in the UAS was picked up by Apple News, finding that lost benefits for returning to work are not always anticipated.

NOVEMBER – Lila Rabinovich was featured in The Conversation on her work funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation looking at women and fiancial literacy; struggling particularly at older ages.

OCTOBER – USC Dornsife put out a press release announcing a new NIH study led by CESR Researchers Soeren Mattke and Ying Liu on the importance of diagnosing early cognitive impairment.  The study was quickly picked up and featured in TIME Magazine.

SEPTEMBER – The Understanding America Study is referenced in this article in the Washington Post about the end of paper checks and the near death of cash. The Atlanta Fed has been collecting annual payment preference data in the UAS for many years and had noted these trends along with other growing trends in app based payments and bitcoin ownership.

Another study using the UAS was in the news this month, Kayla de la Haye’s work with the Dornsife Public Exchange on Food insecurity.  After the Dornsife Press Release went out, there was an Interview with KTLA also picked up by LAist and Yahoo news.

JUNE – Jeremy Burke was featured in an article on Wallet Hub discussing credit cards and credit history for students.

MARCH – We had our 10th anniversary conference, The End of Enlightenment?, at Town and Gown on the USC Campus on March 15th.

Kyla Thomas was interviewed by the New York Times on the LAUSD school workers strike and the cost of living in Los Angeles.

New release on findings in LA county on food insecurity, using the Understanding America Study.  Throughout 2022, 37% of low-income residents of Los Angeles County lacked access to sufficient food for an active, healthy life. That’s 10 points more than in 2018, before the pandemic struck, according to research published by USC Dornsife’s Public Exchange.

JANUARY – Understanding Coronavirus in America longitudinal poll looking at Covid-19 related behavior and outcomes was references in the Wall Street Journal in China’s Useful Covid Lesson.

Congratulations to Executive Director Arie Kapteyn, who was selected to receive a 2023 Associates Award for Creativity in Research and Scholarship from the University of Southern California!

The Understanding America Study was featured in Dornsife News on our Covid Tracking poll, Understanding Coronavirus in America and other timely survey features we can offer to USC and the world!


OCTOBER – What do Americans think about controversial topics in schools?  Though Americans widely support teaching K-12 students about slavery and racial inequality, most don’t want books with LGBTQ themes made available in schools, according to a new report from USC Dornsife and USC Rossier researchers.

JANUARY – Work by Maria Prados and Gema Zamarro on the joys of parenting during the pandemic was featured in Scientific American.


DECEMBER – Watch Dornsife’s end of year video featuring CESR Researcher Kyla Thomas and her work on LA Barometer.

NOVEMBER –  Jeremy Burke was featured in Hello Wallet  discussing a “credit builder loan” and how it can help some improve their financial outcomes.

SEPTEMBER – Francisco Perez-Arce was featured in Healthline discussing how mental health was reported to have improved after a Covid vaccination, as found in the Understanding America Study.

New blogpost came out in The Evidence Base, our joint blog with the Schaeffer Center, by Joanne Yoong looking at Gender and Financial literacy for older women for a project funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

AUGUST – In the news on going back to school with the Delta Variant, UAS data tracked changes in parents’ willingness to return children to in person learning, as quoted by MarketWatch.

JUNE – Yahoo news is covering an article Anna Saavedra and Morgan Polikof wrote about parent’s options of learning experiences and practices during COVID.

Los Angeles Daily News (via City News Service) highlighted research by Kyla Thomas of the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research that found 10% of the region’s residents plan to relocate despite reporting higher consumer confidence and decreasing levels of crime in their neighborhoods. “Our latest findings, which reflect the experiences of L.A. County residents during the peak of the pandemic, reveal reasons for optimism as well as concern,” she said. Additional coverage of the LABarometer survey was found in My News LA, KFI-AM, KCRW-FM, KPCC-FM, KNX-AM, LAist, ABC News Los Angeles Affiliate KABC-TV, NBC News Los Angeles Affiliate KNBC-TV, CW News Los Angeles affiliate KTLA-TV, Fox News Los Angeles Affiliate KTTV-TV, and Spectrum News 1.

A great deal of coverage has been made of our newest findings on misery during the pandemic.  USA Today, among others.

MAY – Kyla Thomas was featured on the ABC news discussing our new “Misery Index” which looks at the emotional and stress burden of the Covid-19 pandemic through our Health Tracking Surveys in the Understanding America Study:  https://abc7.com/usc-pandemic-study-covid-research/10690224/

Margaret Gatz is involved in a study of the Tsimane people in Bolivia and findings on their slower aging and healthier brains.

FEBRUARY – NBC News Los Angeles affiliate KNBC-TV featured Kyla Thomas of the USC Dornsife College’s Center for Economic and Social Research and Wändi Bruine de Bruin of the USC Price School on low rates of vaccine intent and the importance of messaging among minority populations. “We’re seeing much lower rates of vaccine acceptance. Nationally, about 63% of our respondents say they’re somewhat or very likely to be vaccinated,” Thomas said.

CW News Los Angeles affiliate KTLA-TV featured the latest results of the USC Dornsife College’s L.A. Barometer survey, which illustrate how the pandemic has worsened existing disparities in Los Angeles. “High rates of housing insecurity very much make L.A. more vulnerable to the impact of the pandemic on public health,” said survey director Kyla Thomas. Additional coverage was found on PBS News Los Angeles affiliate KCET-TV, LAist and Telemundo Los Angeles affiliate KVEA-TV.

Chalkbeat features our data in this story from today and quotes Anna Saavedra on parents, schools and the challenges of remote learning.

KNX 1070 AM featured research from the USC Dornsife College’s Center for Economic and Social Research on the role education plays in people’s desire to seek out the COVID-19 vaccine. “One year into this pandemic, with vaccines now being rolled out across the U.S., education level has become a greater factor than race,” said the center’s Jill Darling. Additional coverage was found on Spectrum News 1.

JANUARY – Our continued Understanding Coronavirus in America Study health tracking poll was picked up in the news with some findings on trends in mask wearing.  Numerous local (Los Angeles) area news stations covered the story and interviewed Kyla Thomas as well. The study was also featured in the New York Times. Newsweek, UPI, Yahoo, MSN (CBS), and others.


NOVEMBER – The Understanding America Study was in the news with both our election tracking and Understanding Corona Virus in America tracking studies. In this Marketplace interview, Jill Darling discusses our polling experience.

We also have opportunities for researchers to add questions to our Understanding Corona Virus study at no cost, click here to learn more. First deadline is November 30th!  Anna Saavedra and colleagues were featured on their work in how Covid has been impacting parents and children in terms of learning, the technicalogical divide, and burden on working parents.  Politico weekly education special , The Evidence Project, and Education trade journal Chalkbeat .

OCTOBER – The election is in the news and our Daybreak Tracking Poll is getting a great deal of attention.  Newsweek, repeated stories in the LA Times as the days count down.  The media has not forgotten Covid-19 however, a key issue in the Presidential debates.  CNN writes up some recent findings.

SEPTEMBER – Let the UAS election tracking poll begin! News release on our new methodology and some early results.  Los Angeles Timesfeatured the latest results of the USC Dornsife College’s Daybreak Poll, which highlighted the challenges Joe Biden and Donald Trump are facing as the election draws near. “So far, few voters are focused on climate change as a deciding issue in the campaign. It will be interesting to see if that changes as the campaign progresses,” said Jill Darling of the USC Dornsife College’s Center for Economic and Social Research.

AUGUST – Our Daybreak Election poll is back! USC Dornsife sent out the press release today. In addition to our Coronavirus Tracking poll, we have now added an election opinion poll which looks at social networks and voting probabilities.  Similar to other years, the sample is asked each week for their opinions and the data evolves nightly.  Mentioned many places, including CNN.

JULY – This month the UAS work on Understanding Corona virus in America focused on mental health, parenting, and discrimination, the latter highlighted in this interview Ying Liu gave to ABC7.  We were featured on many local news stations including KCAL9, KABC News, KCBS, and Fox11.  Our data was also mentioned in the LA Times in an article about youth behavior during the virus.  A number of tables were presented in the article from LA County which use our data in their analysis.  We were also featured in the New York Times in a piece on parenting challenges during the virus, and a quote from Gema Zamarro on our findings that show 44% of women report to be the sole caregivers in two-parent homes during the stay at home orders.

JUNE – Daniel Bennett was featured in a number of news sources discussing Understanding Corona Virus in America’s findings on mental health.  NBC interview highlighted the worry of Angelenos, as did MyNewsLA. UPI featured mental health findings from Johns Hopkins and USC.  HealthDay also picked up the story tracking mental health effects of Covid.

MAY – Our Covid19 UAS tracking poll is in the news:  Arie Kapteyn was interviewed on ABC news this morning on how the job losses are affecting Los Angeles and women more so than other groups.  More coverage in the Pasadena StarSan Gabriel Valley Tribuneand the Daily News on LA County being hard hit economically by the virus. On May 12th USC released this press release on behavior changes from our Understanding Cornona Virus in America study, which was picked up by CityLab.

APRIL – Covid-19 panel data is being collected each week on the Understanding America Study. Here is an article in the LA Times which highlights the findings of joblessness and uncertainty and a press release from USC noting the plans for regular data.  Kyla Thomas was featured on CBS news discussing findings from our Los Angeles sample.  We were also featured in London’s Daily Mail on our findings about out of work Angelenos (about half the county reported work hours or job loss).

MARCH – We fielded a survey March 10th to members of the Understanding America Study. An early data release is here, which covers findings about behavioral changes and perceived risk.

We published related blog posts here:  https://healthpolicy.usc.edu/evidence-base/


OCTOBER – LA Barometer Livability survey is released!  This is the link to the AirTalk appearance (Larry Mantle) with LABarometer Director Kyla Thomas.  Kyla explained the significance of the quarterly survey, as well as the likely reasons behind the lower life satisfaction rating in Los Angeles. Fox 5 in San Diego posted an online story from City News Service.

SEPTEMBER – A new write up in the LA Times about Understanding America Study respondents feelings on the leanings of candidates.

AUGUST – USC Dornsife Understanding America Poll included some questions on voter opinion last month. Summarized in this USC article and in the LA Times by David Lauter:  “The poll illustrates the steep challenge that Trump faces in winning reelection: A majority of Americans eligible to vote would be unhappy if Trump were reelected, the survey finds. Of those polled, 54% said they would be unhappy, 29% happy, and 16% neither.”

JULY – Voting haze-Understanding America Study polling on the indecision and indecisiveness surrounding Democratic candidates in the LA Times.

Dan Benjamin speaks to RadioLab on genetic predictions on their special on “Unnatural Selection“.

APRIL – On tax day, the LA Times published a story on how Americans are feeling about taxes and refunds under the new tax policy.

MARCH – Daniel Benjamin was featured in USC’s academic minute, discussing the results from a large genetic study which looked for genetic variants which may play a role in educational attainment.

FEBRUARY – LA Times/Dornsife tracking poll results quoted in article on opinions of high speed rail in California.


OCTOBER – A number of articles were released this month in the Los Angeles Times surrounding work on the Understanding America Study poll:
Prop 10, which would expand rent control, is in ‘deep trouble,’ poll shows Liam Dillon (October 19, 2018)
Initiative to repeal gas tax is falling short, according to poll of California voters Patrick McGreevy (October 19, 2018)
Sen. Dianne Feinstein is a good bet to win reelection, serve a final term and retire reluctantly George Skelton (October 18, 2018)
De Leon has run against Feinstein from the left, but much of his support comes from Republicans, new poll finds Sarah D. Wire (October 18, 2018)
Poll shows Newsom with a commanding lead over Cox in final weeks before Californians select their next governor Phil Willon (October 17, 2018)
Proposition 13 has strictly limited property tax increases since 1978. Voters get a chance to change that Liam Dillon (October 17, 2018)

Jill Darling and Robert Schrum were also featured in The Conversation for their work looking at a historical view of press freedoms.

SEPTEMBER – Trump and truth, poll data was used by Dornsife Magazine to look at where voters are leaning in upcoming elections.

Kyla Thomas was featured in Dornsife Magazine on her work on the effects of taste and snobbery!

AUGUST – Wired magazine picked up Dan Benjamin’s work on gene effects on educational attainment.

CESR researchers Lila Rabinovich and Anya Samek were featured on CBS news for their work on Social Security claiming and regret.

JULY – Dornsife media issued a press release to summarize a new publication in Nature Genetics, about Daniel Benjamin’s massive undertaking with the Social Science Genetic Association Consortium (link to article FAQs here) to try to find which genes affect educational attainment.  Carl Zimmer of  The New York Times and Ed Yong of The Atlantic both wrote excellent summaries of their takeaways from the paper.

The Scientist also featured research by Daniel Benjamin of the USC Dornsife College’s Center for Economic and Social Research on genetic markers that may predict educational attainment. Although the roughly 1,300 genes identified served as a reliable predictor for some demographics, the conclusions did not hold true for all Americans. Benjamin hopes to grow the study to more than 2 million people and expects to find thousands more genes linked to education. Slate, ABC News (Australia), IANS and Press Trust of India highlighted the study’s findings.

JUNE – The Understanding America Study has been featured in the Los Angeles Times this month in articles utilizing data from our California Poll.  An initial article is about the Governor race (Newsome is leading) and another about the Senate race (most are undecided!).

MAY – USC Dornsife/LA Times Poll featured in the LA Times May 29, 2018, on transportation issues: local poll of 835 voters found that respondents were pretty equally divided over the high-speed rail line, with 48% expressing at least some support and 43% opposed.

New poll finds a volatile race for second place in California governor’s contest: Understanding America Study survey is featured in the LA Times, May 22, 2018.

Poll was also mentioned in an article by Arnold Schwartzenegger and Ro Khanna in the Washington Post about the open primary system.

APRIL – CESR Executive Director Arie Kapteyn was featured on the USC home page and in a press release about his work on international comparisons of physical activity.  The piece is published April 11 in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. An animation summary gives a quick overview of findings.


OCTOBER – Our Executive Director Arie Kapteyn was awarded a sort of Dutch Lifetime achievement award for his work in Economics, The Pierson Penning. He received this honor joint with his advisor Bernard van Praag.  This medal is awarded once every three years to one of more Dutch or Netherlands based economists for their contributions to economics or the economy, with a focus on topics Pierson was interested in:(1) methods, (2) social questions; (3) the international monetary system; (4) fair taxation. His award emphasized his work (with van Praag and others) on interdependent preferences and subjective poverty thresholds, but (some of) his other contributions were also mentioned.  Congratulations!  Tilburg University also announced the event that took place at the University of Amsterdam.

Donna Spruijt-Metz is featured in an article about healthy eating and easing into a vegetarian lifestyle on WalletHub.

SEPTEMBER– Maria Prados and co-authors had a write up in Vox about their paper on the long-term benefits of early childcare.  With Jorge Luis García, James Heckman, and Duncan Ermini Leaf.

AUGUST – Marco Angrisani, Maria Cassanova and Erik Meijer presented their paper on working at older ages at a retirement research consortium meeting in Washington D.C. at the National Press Club, which was picked up for a mention in Forbes.  One striking finding was evidence that women made a change in their work status when their spouse experienced a health shock.  Read the full paper here!

JULY – CESR’s new brochure wins an award of excellence from the UCDA Design Competition.  We think Dornsife publications did an outstanding job as well!

Anna Saavedra’s study “Knowledge in Action” was featured in the Dornsife news. The study, funded by the Lucas Educational Foundation, has fielded experiments in schools across the country on ways AP course curriculum is delivered to students.  Read full article.

JUNE – Daniel Benjamin of the Center for Economic and Social Research projects a vision of how analyzing the big data of genetics may improve social policy intervention and life outcomes.

We are pleased to announce CESR’s partiipation in SSA2017, Society for Ambulatory Assessment in Luxemboug, 15-17 June 2017 by key note speakers Arthur Stone and Donna Spruijt-Metz.


Case and Deaton: Morbidity and Mortality in America
Town and Gown, 10.30am Thursday April 21st, Anne Case and Angus Deaton will present their groundbreaking work on falling life expectancy.

Conference on Polygenic Prediction and its Application in Social Science
We are pleased to host the largest international gathering to date of experts in the field of poly, with Keynote speaker Kari Stefansson, famous for the Decode study – one of the first large scale efforts to collect genetic information on the population of Iceland. Conference is being held at USC April 13th and 14th.

FEBRUARY – Our work with the Social Security Administration using the Understanding America Study in a number of studies on retirement deicision making is featured on their Retirement Initiative Website.

Donna Spruijt-Metz is quoted in an LA Times article featuring activity tracking devices such as Fitbits and our obsession with them.

Juan Saavedra’s work on remedial education in Peru was featured in an Inter-American Development Bank Publication.

President Trump mentioned our Day Break poll at CPAC, and the LA Times wrote a response touching on what we did right and what we missed.



“DAYBREAK” Election Poll Coverage

And so 2016 closed with us getting the prize for “Statistical Fortitude” from 538.  There are worse ways to go. Read more about how we were in the news….

Our op ed on The Hill was posted in an attempt to address some of the comments we have received about the poll and how we are different.

Here is Nate Silver’s response to our poll and David Lauter’s response to the New York Times, and our editorial to The Hill, David Lauter’s November 8th Moment of Truth article,  and much more…









































AUGUST – Our Day Break poll using the Understanding America Study is featured on the Dornsife website.

New research with the Society of Actuaries finds many retirees would have trouble coming up with emergency funds. Click here to read the release or here for the full report.

JULYCESR is excited to launch our new election poll!  We will be tracking participating Understanding America Study respondents each week as they think about the November election.  Today we were featured by David Lauter in the Los Angeles times.  Bookmark our election site for regular data updates!  This month we have been featured numerous places, from the Drudge Reportto the The Hill.

JUNE – CESR research programmer Adrian Montero published work on a study about e-cigarettes.  Results:  Adult smokers and non-smokers have different perceptions and expectations, so public health messages regarding e-cigarettes may need to be tailored separately for persons with and without a history of using conventional cigarettes to increase impact.  Forthcoming!

Also in the news, CESR Economist Marco Angrisani and colleagues explore why people retire earlier than they expected.

MARCH – Jinkook Lee’s Longitudinal Aging Study in India (LASI) makes the news with its ambitious goals to study such a large population in partnership with the Indian Ministry of Health, Harvard School of Public Health, International Institute for Population Sciences, and the National Institute on Aging.

Dan Benjamin and co-author Jim Berger responded to the American Statistical Association’s response to solving the debate about the reproduceability of social science studies.  See our blog post for his comments.

FEBRUARY – A survey on how Americans manage their finances led to a working paper which led to a blog post.  This work, which was in conjunction with the Society of Actuaries, the National Institute on Aging and the Social Security Administration, was recently picked up by CBS Money Watch.

JANUARY – Princeton University awarded the Albert Rees prize jointly to Silvia Barcellos and Leandro Carvalho for their contribution to Labor Economics!

Carvalho also had a paper recently published in the American Economic Review, Poverty and Economic Decision-Making: Evidence from Changes in Financial Resources at Payday

New video interview posted on our obesity research star, Donna Spruijt-Metz.


NOVEMBER – Jay Greene presented his work on the effect of public and private schooling on antisemitism at the American Enterprise Institute conference. He used data from the Understanding America Study survey the University of Arkansas had developed, UAS15.

November was a month of Donna Spruijt-Metz, a psychologist who studies the American epidemic of childhood obesity.  She has long sought a more effective way to study the family eating dynamics that lead to unhealthy weight gain, and is partnering with a team at the University of Virginia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science to construct a new, data-driven method for combatting obesity. Read USC’s article as well.  Spruijt-Metz also won the Pioneer award for excellence and m-health!

OCTOBER – According to psychology professor Donna Spruijt-Metz, who researches ways to combat childhood obesity, Halloween offers parents an opportunity to talk to their kids about healthful eating. Read more.

SEPTEMBER – Dr. Donna Spruijt-Metz has a new project of grand scope from the National Science Foundation to study obesity.  The Daily Mail in the UK picked it up here.

AUGUST – Executive Director Arie Kapteyn adds his voice on Social Security’s 80th birthday.

JULY – Donna Spruijt-Metz and Arthur Stone spent two days at Intel participating in the Precision Medicine Initiative (PMI) Working Group of the Advisory Committee to the NIH Director (ACD)  on Mobile and Personal Technologies.

Juan Saavedra finds in his new paper, The Big Sort: College Reputation and Labor Market Outcomes, that the reputation of a college is correlated with their graduates’ earning growth.

With co-authors W. Bentley MacLeod, Evan Riehl, Juan E. Saavedra, and Miguel Urquiola.  Full paper is found in the CESR working Paper series as well as NBER

JUNEAshlesha Datar analyzed the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study and found obesity increased 20 percent among kindergartners from low- and middle-income households over the course of a decade, from 11.6 percent in the 1998-99 school year to 13.9 percent in 2009-10. Read more.

MARCH – CESR announces its forthcoming conference in Singapore, Frontiers of Behavioral Economics: Choice and Wellbeing in the Asia Pacific in June 2015. See our event site for details!



DECEMBER – Silvia Barcellos was in the news with her work on immigration, both in the Economist and it was also cited by the Whitehouse Council of Economic Advisers.