Caitlyn T Brazill
Adjunct Associate Professor of Public Administration

Caitlyn Brazill is the Vice President for Strategic Partnerships at CAMBA, where she is responsible for resource development, communications and government affairs. Her work supports a $100-million organization with 150 human service programs reaching 45,000 low and moderate income New Yorkers each year. Prior to joining CAMBA, Caitlyn worked in the non-profit and government sectors in New York City for more than 10 years, including as Director of Policy and Communications at NYU’s Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy and as Director of Research and Policy at the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs' Office of Financial Empowerment. She has expertise in program evaluation and design, qualitative and quantitative research, policy advocacy, organizational development, and has worked across diverse policy domains, including asset building and financial services, workforce and youth development, child welfare and income support. She has been an adjunct professor at New York University since 2005 and has lectured on statistics, wealth inequality and poverty. Caitlyn earned her B.A. in Sociology from the State University of New York at Albany and her M.P.A at NYU's Wagner School of Public Service. Caitlyn lives in Brooklyn with her husband.

Semester Course
Fall 2011 URPL-GP.4622.001 Wealth and Inequality: Asset Development and Poverty Reduction Policies in the U.S.

Financial assets underpin the economic fabric of the U.S. Households' ability to accumulate wealth is a function of income, private financial products and services, and public policy. This course will examine how the accumulation of such assets - namely land, homes, investments - is stimulated and shaped by government intervention. From tax and policy to banking regulation, poverty alleviation programs to discrimination laws, the U.S. government has historically played a critical role in promoting wealth among some groups and excluding others from such privilege.

The course will review new strategies supported by foundations, community practitioners, financial institutions and policymakers for expanding this country's successful wealth-formation vehicles - such as individual development accounts and
life-long savings accounts. At the same time, the course will consider how effective public policy must understand the limitations of such innovations, considering factors undermining asset formation such as predatory lending, consumer psychology and financial product availability. The course, which is designed to be participatory and interactive, will conclude with students conceptualizing their own assets policies.

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Date Publication/Paper

Weitzman, B.C., Silver, D. & Brazill, C. 2006. Efforts to Improve Public Policy and Programs Through Improved "Data Practice": Experiences in Fifteen Distressed American Cities" Public Administration Review Vol. 66 No. 3

Philanthropies and government agencies interested in children's issues are encouraging localities to improve the process of collecting, linking, and sharing microdata and aggregated summary statistics. An implicit assumption of these efforts is that outcomes will improve as a result of the new approaches. However, there has been little systematic study of these efforts. In this article, we examine efforts to improve data practice in 15 distressed American cities. Interviews conducted in these cities revealed variation in the types of information collected, dissemination, and intended audiences. We identify significant challenges to these efforts, including adequate resources, turf battles, technical problems, access to information sources, inconsistent leadership, and absence of political will. We find that little is known about the impact of these initiatives on decision making. Assumptions that improved data practice will lead to improved policy making have not yet been realized in these cities.