Understanding the causes, consequences, and current programs to address poverty in Montana and the U.S.

A conference sponsored by the Montana State University Initiative for Regulation and Applied Economic Analysis

April 7, 2017 | Procrastinator Theater, Montana State University, Bozeman, MT

Our aim is not only to relieve the symptom of poverty, but to cure it and, above all, to prevent it. No single piece of legislation, however, is going to suffice.”
- President Lyndon Johnson, 1964 State of the Union Address


Although the U.S. poverty rate declined from near 20% to near 10% in the first few years after President Johnson declared War on Poverty 52 years ago, progress against poverty since then has been minimal at best. Despite spending nearly $1 trillion annually on dozens of poverty-reduction programs, the U.S. poverty rate has hovered between 10 and 15% for the last 50 years. Montana is no exception to these national trends, with the latest Census data indicating that our poverty rate was 14.6% in 2015. Poverty is much higher on our reservations, where more than 1 in 3 people live in poverty.

This day-long conference will bring together nationally-recognized researchers, policymakers, and advocates working on the front lines in the fight against poverty to discuss the causes and consequences of poverty and the role of policy and regulation in the fight against poverty nationally, and in Montana in particular. Sessions will focus on both short- and long-term policies, from nutrition and health insurance programs, to the impact of family structure, to the roles education, work, and social entrepreneurship in the fight against poverty.

Attendees will leave the conference with a deeper understanding of the causes and consequences of poverty, the impact of the myriad policies designed to help the poor, and the prospects for effective policies aimed at reducing poverty moving forward. 

Date: April 7, 2017

Location:  Montana State University, Procrastinator Theater, Room 237 Student Union Building

Agenda for conference

Biographies of speakers

Cost: $10.00 for Community Members  (lunch included)
Fee waived for MSU students, staff, and faculty

For more information: Vince Smith vsmith@montana.edu ; Wendy Stock wstock@montana.edu

Registration or attendance Inquires: Tamara Moe, Business Manager, tamara.moe@montana.edu

Parking map and information.