The infrastructure needed to support a thriving California economy

Earlier this month, Gov. Jerry Brown and California legislators announced agreement on a bold plan to invest in the state’s crumbling roads and highways, putting aside years of disagreement to get people and goods moving through regions like Los Angeles again. Now, our leaders must act with the same resolve to increase the production of…

Survey shows impact of costly L.A. housing on employer-employee relationship

USC Professor Dr. Raphael Bostic and a team of USC researchers surveyed 14 major public and private sector Los Angeles employers that represent more than 200,000 employees. Survey questions included their views on how the cost of living affected their ability to attract and retain workers, how employees are handling the high costs and what…

Bonus- Cop in the Hood (part 2)

In part 2 of our discussion of Cop in the Hood by Peter Moskos, we discuss the notion of discretion in the legal system – by police all the way to prosecutors & parole/probation boards. We think about discrimination in enforcement made possible by discretion. We think about conflicts of interest in investigations of police misconduct – especially in relation to the war on drugs. How should we move forward?

Cop in the Hood

We ask how to define “good” policing, as we discuss sociologist Peter Moskos’ Cop in the Hood: My Year Policing Baltimore’s Eastern District. What expectations do we put on police officers? How do police departments measure success? What should we measure for success? What does “law and order” mean? Do police receive the right kind of training to deliver the service communities want them to provide? How does Baltimore differ from Los Angeles? We also discuss the epic policy failure of the War on Drugs and the idea of legalization.

CA employers can’t recruit ‘high-performers’ thanks to insane housing prices

Business Insider featured research by Raphael Bostic of the USC Price School and the Los Angeles Business Council finding the city’s high housing costs discourages outsiders from entering the Los Angeles job market. “There’s ample evidence to show that the time is now to implement strategies to reduce housing costs,” Bostic said. The story also…

Major L.A. Employers Raise Concerns That High Cost of Living Is a Barrier to Attracting and Retaining Top Talent

Housing costs are deterring top-talent from entering the Los Angeles job market, and leading to higher costs in recruiting and retaining employees, according to a new survey released today by Raphael Bostic, a USC Price School of Public Policy Professor and the newly appointed head of the Atlanta Federal Reserve. Bostic led a team of USC researchers in surveying major L.A. employers accounting for nearly 200,000 jobs in key sectors including utilities, healthcare, education, government, engineering and finance ..

America needs small apartment buildings. Nobody builds them

Bloomberg highlighted research co-authored by Raphael Bostic  and Enterprise Community Partners which shows that average monthly rents in small to mid-sized apartment buildings are the most affordable nationwide, but these smaller apartment buildings are the least likely to be built. If this trend continues, the market for affordable housing will continue to dwindle. Zoning rules have developed to favor…

Small and Medium Multifamily Housing is Overlooked Part of Solution to Housing Affordability Challenges

While rental housing is often associated with large, high-rise apartments, 54 percent of U.S. rentals are in small and medium multifamily housing (SMMF), properties with between two and 49 units. SMMF is a much more important source of homes than has generally been recognized, especially for low-income households, according to new research from Enterprise Community Partners Inc. (Enterprise) and the The USC Bedrosian Center on Governance, housed at the USC Price School of Public Policy.

The Underground Railroad

*Warning: Spoilers!*

In Colson Whitehead’s award winning novel The Underground Railroad, Cora, daughter and granddaughter of slaves, flees her plantation after a horrific punishment. She heads out with a fellow slave Caesar, who takes her to the underground railroad – in this novel, a real RR. She is passionately pursued by Ridgeway, a slave catcher while she experiences the horrors of American racism and the courage of the RR personnel. The book compares a mythological Southern narrative of slavery with Cora’s truths and Ridgeway’s version of the “American imperative.” Beautifully written, full of horrific incidents, the book reminds us of the power of racism, the government’s complicity in its implementation and persistence, and reminds us freed African Americans carried with them the legacy of violence, oppression, suppression, and more violence whether from the police, physicians, or any other institution.

To listen to the Bedrosian Book Club discussion of The Underground Railroad click the orange arrow in the Soundcloud player here – or you can download it and subscribe through iTunes, Soundcloud, or Google Play