San Francisco Grapples With a Widening "Wealth Gap"

Mar 25, 2014

Can San Francisco become more affordable?  According to the Brookings Institute, San Francisco's "wealth gap" has widened at a faster rate than that of any other city in the United States.  Host Joseph Pace and a panel of experts explore the implications of the accelerating economic division in San Francisco.

Courtesy of the Brookings Institute

Is more housing the answer?

What can we learn from cities that are successfully maintaining growth and a diverse population?

Producer:  Wendy Holcombe


Enrico Moretti: Professor of Economics at the University of California, Berkeley where he holds the Michael Peevey and Donald Vial Career Development Chair in Labor Economics.  He is the Director of the Urbanization Program at the International Growth Centre (London School of Economics) and Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.  His is also Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research (Cambridge) and Research Fellow at the Centre for Economic Policy Research (London) and the Institute for the Study of Labor (Bonn).  His research interests include Labor Economics, Urban Economics, and Regional Economics.  His new book, The New Geography of Jobs, is available in bookstores.

Gabriel Metcalf: Executive Director of SPUR, a nonprofit membership organization that promotes good planning and good government through research, education, and advocacy.  Gabriel has authored or co-authored such notable articles as "The Northern California Megaregion," "Civic Planning in America," "Regional Planning without Regional Government," "Democracy and Planning," and "City of Safety."  He serves on numerous boards and commissions including the America 2050 National Committee and the Transbay Joint Powers Authority.

Prior to SPUR, he worked for the Bay Institute, an environmental organization focused on California water policy.  he was also a co-founder of City CarShare and for many years served as its board chairman.  Gabriel earned a Master's degree in city planning from the University of California, Berkeley College of Environmental Design.

Bob Brownstein: Policy Director at Working Partnerships USA, a research organization focused on state and local government issues.  In this role, he manages a team that analyzes the dynamics of local economies, evaluates the needs of working families, reviews city and county programs, and proposes innovative policy initiatives.  He has been a leading strategist in developing the county's Children's Health Initiative, enacting the Living Wage Law that brings workers out of poverty and most recently managing research for the campaign to adopt a San Jose Minimum Wage of $10 an hour.  Brownstein is currently the chair of the County Health Reform Stakeholder group, and facilitates the participation of multiple organizations in the region on county health policies associated with the implementation of federal health reform.

Prior to his current position, he was Chief of Staff for County Supervisor Susanne Wilson (1978-1990) and Budget Director for San Jose Susan Hammer (1990-1998).  He has a Bachelor's Degree from Princeton University and Master's Degrees from Stanford University and San Jose State University.