Event Summary: "Confronting America’s Housing Crisis" Symposium

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Across America, housing costs have ballooned in recent decades to consume an ever-increasing portion of the average household's income. These spiraling rents and mortgages have also bred separate crises of displacement and homelessness as well as a decline in homeownership opportunities for younger generations. What's driving America's housing crisis and more importantly, what can be done to fix it?

In response, the Murphy Institute’s Center for Public Policy Research, in collaboration with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, Tulane University’s School of Architecture, and the A.B. Freeman School of Business, hosted a two-day research symposium on housing policy April 12-13, 2024 at the New Orleans Culinary and Hospitality Institute (NOCHI).

On Friday, April 12th, more than a dozen experts in housing, lending, policy, and community development participated in panel discussions and presented the latest research on eliminating barriers to housing production, addressing race-based valuation, broadening access to mortgage markets, and expanding housing affordability and abundance.

The symposium, which was open to the public, featured Iñaki Alday, Dean and Richard Koch Chair of the Tulane School of Architecture, Gary “Hoov” Hoover, Executive Director of The Murphy Institute, and Paulo Goes, Dean and Debra and Rick Rees Professor at the Tulane University A.B. Freeman School of Business.

The highlight of the conference was the keynote by Raphael Bostic, President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, moderated by Nicole Friedman, U.S. Housing Reporter at The Wall Street Journal.

On Saturday, April 13th, researchers, stakeholders, and students convened at the A.B. Freeman School of Business for work-shopping sessions featuring current works-in-progress from national housing policy experts Jenny Schuetz, Michael Manville, Christopher Elmendorf, and Nolan Gray.

 

PROGRAM PDF  VIDEOS  PHOTOS

 

Sessions

Keynote

Inaki Alday, Dean of the Tulane School of Architecture, and Gary "Hoov" Hoover, Executive Director of The Murphy Institute, delivered opening remarks followed by the keynote featuring Raphael Bostic, President and CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, moderated by Nicole Friedman of The Wall Street Journal.

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Featured Speakers

  • Raphael Bostic, President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
  • Nicole Friedman, U.S. Housing Reporter, The Wall Street Journal
  • Iñaki Alday, Dean and Richard Koch Chair in Architecture, Tulane University School of Architecture
  • Gary “Hoov” Hoover, Executive Director, The Murphy Institute at Tulane University
  • Jonathan Willis, Vice President and Senior Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Housing Affordability

As the demand for affordable housing continues to rise, so will the need for affordable options. Rising land and construction costs, high interest rates and low inventory are contributing to this issue, as is the growing number of millennials looking for larger homes to raise families. For low-income Americans, the hunt for affordable housing can be especially tough. Communities often resist new developments, citing concerns ranging from property values to neighborhood aesthetics. In this session, our panelists will explore innovative and successful strategies designed to overcome NIMBYism and foster community support for affordable housing initiatives.

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Featured Panelists

  • Brenda Breaux, Executive Director, New Orleans Redevelopment Authority
  • Laurie Goodman, Institute Fellow, Housing Financial Policy Center at the Urban Institute
  • Marjorianna Willman, Executive Director, Louisiana Housing Corporation
  • Kris Gerardi, Research Economist and Senior Advisor, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta
Racial Equity and Valuation

Homeownership remains a central part of the American dream and the primary contributor to generational wealth building and housing stability for millions of families. For far too long, bias in home valuations has limited the ability of Black and brown families to enjoy the financial returns associated with homeownership, thereby contributing to the already sprawling racial wealth gap. In this dynamic panel discussion, experts at the intersection of data analytics and housing converged to illuminate strategies to advance equity and root out racial and ethnic bias in home valuations.

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Featured Panelists

  • N. Edward Coulson, Professor of Economics and Director of the Center for Real Estate, UCI Paul Merage School of Business
  • Andre Perry, Senior Fellow, Metropolitan Policy Program at The Brookings Institution
  • Charu Singh, Managing Director, Portfolio Management, NHP Foundation
  • Moderator: Will Bradshaw, Co-Founder and CEO, The Reimagine Development Partners
Barriers to Production

Communities nationwide suffer from a lack of affordable housing, and housing production is not meeting the increasing demand for accessible and available units in many urban and rural areas, particularly areas of high opportunity. Increasing the supply of housing is crucial to address shortages and provide more affordable options. Our panelists unraveled the impact of barriers to affordable housing production and discussed steps communities can actively take to increase their housing supply and bring down housing costs.

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Featured Panelists

  • Christopher S. Elmendorf, Martin Luther King Jr. Professor of Law, UC Davis School of Law
  • Nolan Gray, Research Director, California YIMBY
  • Michael Manville, Professor and Chair of Urban Planning, UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs
  • Jenny Schuetz, Senior Fellow, Brookings Metro, The Brookings Institution
  • Moderator: Stan Oklobdzija, Director and Assistant Professor of Political Science, Center for Public Policy Research at The Murphy Institute

 

Confronting America’s Housing Crisis: A Review of the Literature

When contemplating housing and the crisis that the United States finds itself in, The Murphy Institute takes a holistic view of the problems and solutions. Housing discussions must necessarily encompass the relevant legal issues, which our Center on Law and the Economy thoroughly examines. Furthermore, housing issues are intricately linked to broader contexts of public policy and economics, as explored by our Center for Public Policy Research. Lastly, any discussion of housing policy would be incomplete without addressing the moral and ethical implications of housing decisions, thoughtfully considered by our Center for Ethics.

Gary A. Hoover
Executive Director, The Murphy Institute
Professor of Economics and Affiliate Professor of Law, Tulane University

Literature

Legal and Regulatory Perspectives on the Housing Crisis by Adam Feibelman and Stacy E. Seicshnaydre

Adam Feibelman is the Sumter D. Marks Professor of Law at Tulane Law School and Director of The Murphy Institute Center on Law and the Economy. Stacy E. Seicshnaydre is Vice-Dean, William K. Christovich Professor of Law and Robert A. Ainsworth Professor in the Courts and the Federal System at Tulane Law School.

Philosophical Perspectives on Affordable Housing by Chad Van Schoelandt

Chad Van Schoelandt is the Director of The Murphy Institute Center for Ethics and Chair and Associate Professor of Philosophy in the Department of Philosophy at Tulane University.

The Causes and Consequences of America’s Housing Crisis by Stan Nguyen Oklobdzija

Stan Nguyen Oklobdzija is the Director of The Murphy Institute Center for Public Policy Research and Assistant Professor of Political Science in the Department of Political Science at Tulane University.