Grants Database

The Foundation awards approximately 200 grants per year (excluding the Sloan Research Fellowships), totaling roughly $80 million dollars in annual commitments in support of research and education in science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and economics. This database contains grants for currently operating programs going back to 2008. For grants from prior years and for now-completed programs, see the annual reports section of this website.

Grants Database

Grantee
Amount
City
Year
  • grantee: Columbia University
    amount: $450,000
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2015

    To investigate how mental stimulation through different types of activities affects cognitive performance in later life and to determine the unique and overlapping contributions of these activities

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Ursula Staudinger

    Studies show that cognitive abilities tend to decline postretirement, and that continuation of work or work-like activity can slow cognitive decline. What is less well understood, however, is exactly which activities are most conducive to maintaining cognitive productivity. This grant funds efforts by Ursula Staudinger, director of the Columbia University Center on Aging, to understand whether and to what degree activities that involve novel information processing play a role in arresting cognitive decline.   Combining aspects of three well-respected longitudinal studies, the Health and Retirement Study, the Midlife in America Study, and the Wisconsin Longitudinal Study, Staudinger and her team will catalog the work and leisure activities of respondents and characterize the ways in which these activities involve the processing of new information. Comparing these activities with health data on cognitive decline will then permit an estimation of the role novel processing plays in sustaining mental productivity. The resulting research promises to provide important new evidence that will help us better understand how to optimize cognitive aging and identify the individuals or groups whose activity patterns place them at particular risk for cognitive decline.

    To investigate how mental stimulation through different types of activities affects cognitive performance in later life and to determine the unique and overlapping contributions of these activities

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  • grantee: University of California, Los Angeles
    amount: $356,199
    city: Los Angeles, CA
    year: 2015

    To provide information on the labor market consequences for adult daughters and sons providing elder care to their aging parents

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Kathleen McGarry

    This grant funds research by UCLA economist Kathleen McGarry that examines how providing eldercare affects the labor market activities of adult sons and daughters. Using descriptive analyses, multivariate regressions, and structural modeling on data drawn from the longitudinal Health and Retirement Study, McGarry and her team will study changes in employment, hours worked, wages, and benefits (including health insurance and pension wealth) of adult caregivers in order to assess how caregiving activities affect financial well-being in later life. They will also draw comparisons across genders between the types of care, the number of hours of care, and the effect on labor market behaviors. Of particular interest is whether having a parent in need increases the labor market attachment of men while decreasing the labor force attachment of women. The experimental sample will have over 3,000 couples in which both spouses have living parents, allowing the UCLA team to investigate the transfer of resources to a husband’s parents compared to a wife’s parents. Preliminary analyses for the provision of parental assistance by married couples suggests that greater financial transfers flow to the husband’s parents and greater time transfers to the wife’s parents. There are several potential explanations for this pattern—including differences in the opportunity cost of time for the husband and wife, household bargaining models, and preference for providing care to a parent of the same gender as the adult child. Additional modeling work will allow the team to simulate the effects of various policy measures on caregiving and labor market outcomes, including public financial support for caregivers and low-cost long-term care insurance. The work promises to increase our understanding of the economics of marriage and the family and its implications for the older work force.

    To provide information on the labor market consequences for adult daughters and sons providing elder care to their aging parents

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  • grantee: Columbia University
    amount: $467,837
    city: New York, NY
    year: 2015

    To provide working journalists with coherent, accessible current research on working longer as a central strategy toward making population aging into an opportunity rather than an individual and societal crisis

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Ruth Finkelstein

    The Age Boom Academy at the Columbia Aging Center is a well-respected forum for learning about up-to-date scholarly research regarding the economic, social, and health issues raised by increased longevity. This grant provides three years of support to the Academy to house and develop a platform for improving journalistic understanding of the aging of the U.S. work force. With Sloan support, the Academy will hold a yearly workshop that brings journalists together with leading researchers to discuss the best current scientific thinking about issues related to aging and work. Issues to be addressed include reimagining work and retirement transitions; health expectancy, life expectancy, and work trajectories; and aging and human capital investment. At least 60 journalists are expected to attend the yearly academies, where they will be able to ask questions, develop relationships with scientists in the field, and learn about new and groundbreaking research. The result will be a press corps more empowered to cover issues related to the aging work force.

    To provide working journalists with coherent, accessible current research on working longer as a central strategy toward making population aging into an opportunity rather than an individual and societal crisis

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  • grantee: Stanford University
    amount: $473,248
    city: Stanford, CA
    year: 2015

    To study the effects of the Affordable Care Act on Older Workers’ Labor Market Outcomes

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Mark Duggan

    The Affordable Care Act (ACA) represents the largest reform to the U.S. health care system since the 1965 introduction of Medicare and Medicaid. Questions arise as to the possible effects of this significant health care change on the labor market behavior of near-elderly workers (workers aged 59 to 64, who are not yet eligible for Medicare). This grant supports a study by Mark Duggan and his colleague Gopi Shah Goda that examines the likely effects of the ACA on labor outcomes for these near elderly. Duggan and Goda will address several questions about the ACA, including how the ACA affects the employment, labor force participation, self-employment, wages, hours of work, and related labor market outcomes of older workers; which provisions of the ACA contribute to the estimated effects; and how these effects vary over time and by gender, race, ethnicity, marital status, educational attainment, and health.

    To study the effects of the Affordable Care Act on Older Workers’ Labor Market Outcomes

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  • grantee: Boston College
    amount: $432,630
    city: Chestnut Hill, MA
    year: 2015

    To build a robust and sustainable multi-disciplinary research network on aging and work

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Jacquelyn James

    Funds from this grant provide three years of support to the Boston College Center on Aging & Work for the operation and expansion of a multidisciplinary research network that links together scholars working on issues related to the aging work force. To date, nearly 90 scholars from 15 disciplines across 14 countries have joined the network, sharing the latest news, research results, data, and ideas for further scholarship. Grant funds will support expansion of the network’s membership to 150 members globally, a survey to track member priorities, the launch of a summer research institute in 2016, a one-day member conference to be held at the annual meeting of the 2017 Gerontological Society of America, and the development of a long-term sustainability plan for the network.

    To build a robust and sustainable multi-disciplinary research network on aging and work

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  • grantee: Urban Institute
    amount: $474,087
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2015

    To assess recent trends in Medicare enrollees’ access to physician services at the state and local level and to study the implications for labor supply decisions at older ages

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Fredric Blavin

    A number of economic studies have found that workers with access to private retiree health insurance are much more likely to retire than are their counterparts without such access who must rely entirely on Medicare. This grant to the Urban Institute supports a project that looks at the relationship between health insurance and decisions to extend work lives or to retire. Drawing on data from physician and household surveys, this project will address a number of important issues, including recent trends in physicians’ acceptance of Medicare patients, how Medicare beneficiaries’ access to care differs from those with private insurance, how these differences correlate with various factors like physician specialty, and whether these differences affect retirement decisions. Findings will shed important new light on the relative attractiveness of Medicare relative to private health insurance and the extent to which that comparison affects the exit of older workers from the labor market.

    To assess recent trends in Medicare enrollees’ access to physician services at the state and local level and to study the implications for labor supply decisions at older ages

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  • grantee: Stanford University
    amount: $72,758
    city: Stanford, CA
    year: 2015

    To gain new insights regarding labor market pathways to retirement with particular attention to the role of self-employment and to analyze the labor market participation of the 1945 birth cohort from ages 54 – 68 in a comprehensive manner

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator John Shoven

    To gain new insights regarding labor market pathways to retirement with particular attention to the role of self-employment and to analyze the labor market participation of the 1945 birth cohort from ages 54 – 68 in a comprehensive manner

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  • grantee: American Council on Education
    amount: $122,739
    city: Washington, DC
    year: 2015

    To support a national conference to identify, catalog, and disseminate generalizable principles, strategies, interventions, and tools that can be modified and used to assist senior faculty as they begin to transition to retirement

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Jean McLaughlin

    To support a national conference to identify, catalog, and disseminate generalizable principles, strategies, interventions, and tools that can be modified and used to assist senior faculty as they begin to transition to retirement

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  • grantee: National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    amount: $1,262,700
    city: Cambridge, MA
    year: 2015

    To support dissertation-stage research by economics doctoral students  working on a range of labor market issues related to an aging population

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator David Card

    This grant provides continued support for a fellowship program by the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), which supports young economics scholars whose research focuses on issues relating to the labor market for aging workers. Fellowships are awarded for a single year, with a review at the end of the first year and a second-year of funding available but conditioned on satisfactory progress in the first year.  The annual selection process includes a broadly disseminated call for proposals that is sent to an extensive list of U.S. Ph.D.-granting economics departments, to researchers who are members of the Society of Labor Economists, and to researchers affiliated with the NBER research programs in Aging, Labor Studies, and Public Economics. Applications are then reviewed by a panel of experts on labor economics, aging, and public finance. Fellows are selected based on the panel’s evaluation of their potential to make important contributions to understanding the determinants and consequences of labor market activity at older ages. Funds from this grant will support three cohorts of four doctoral students beginning with the 2016-17 academic year.

    To support dissertation-stage research by economics doctoral students  working on a range of labor market issues related to an aging population

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  • grantee: RAND Corporation
    amount: $347,872
    city: Santa Monica, CA
    year: 2015

    To understand how joint retirement and partial retirement interact

    • Program Working Longer
    • Investigator Katherine Carman

    Whereas retirement in a traditional marriage of breadwinner and homemaker involves a single retirement decision, in a two-earner marriage, the decisions are dual, and in many cases, joint. Yet, exactly what the pathways are for both members of working couples as they transition from full employment to full retirement are less than clear. This grant to the RAND Corporation supports a research project aimed at increasing our understanding of couples’ work and retirement trajectories by developing a theoretical model describing joint work-to-retirement transitions that can be applied to 12 waves of the Health and Retirement Study data. The data will allow the RAND team to examine how preferences for joint retirement and opportunities for partial retirement interact in the retirement decision, provide the first estimates of the prevalence of different joint work-to-retirement trajectories, and examine how factors such as age differences, part-time work opportunities, and leisure cause couples to make similar or different retirement transitions. In addition, the RAND team will explore how multistate models can be applied to the analysis of Health and Retirement Study data to explain retirement transitions across a range of pathways from full-time work to full-time retirement, including transitions through part-time employment.

    To understand how joint retirement and partial retirement interact

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