Family Finances

Income Volatility: Survey Results, Videos, Blog Posts, and Other Updates from EPIC

September 13, 2016  • Financial Security Program

Just five months ago we announced the launch of this new initiative of ours – EPIC – the Expanding Prosperity Impact Collaborative.

EPIC is designed to harness the knowledge of a wide cross section of experts working in applied, academic, government, and industry settings towards the goal of illuminating and solving critical drivers of financial inequity and insecurity.

EPIC focuses on one distinct issue at a time that is critical to the financial security of Americans but not widely understood. The process will serve as a catalyst that raises both the profile and priority-level of household financial challenges in order to spur effective action.   In fact, we just posted a new video about EPIC and the process we have developed.  Check it out here.

As you may remember, our inaugural issue is Income Volatility. And for the last several months we have been hard at work with our Advisory Group, convening participants, and survey respondents trying to come to convergence about how we understand the scope and scale of the problem and its impact on specific populations. This has led to one brief that synthesizes the current research and a second, forthcoming brief (late September 2016) that lays out the policies, products, and practices that might reduce volatility or mitigate its worst effects.   So make sure to come back to our site to check it out.

Understanding Income Volatility

Over the course of 4 months, we surveyed 150+ experts on income volatility and its impact on the financial lives of Americans. Click on the image below to learn more about our survey process and explore our findings.



Through conversations, interviews, and blog posts, you can engage in our discussions with experts, including researchers, financial service innovators, policymakers, advocates, and more:

What Is All the Research Telling Us?

Our first issue brief, “Income Volatility: A Primer,” was a comprehensive literature review of what is known about the prevalence, causes, and impact of income volatility. Stay tuned for our next brief, a solutions framework that lays out potential solutions for mitigating and managing volatility at both the household and societal levels.

What We’re Reading

Our work is informed by the great research and insights of our colleagues.  Here’s a short list of some of the work we have been digging into:

Engage With Us

EPIC is a collaborative process and we want you to contribute to the conversation. Follow new developments and tweet about EPIC using @Aspen_FSP and #AspenEPIC. And, if you have a personal story about volatility in your own life, we want to hear it. Email us at