Elisabeth Babcock (Beth) is the President and CEO of Economic Mobility Pathways (EMPath), a national charitable organization dedicated to creating new pathways to economic independence for low-income women and their families. EMPath uses its unique “action-tank” business model to design, build, and test new approaches for creating economic mobility and then share them with other organizations and governments. Beth’s role as CEO is to lead EMPath in its strategy to be a research and innovations powerhouse consistently delivering new approaches that expedite pathways out of poverty.

EMPath’s applied research led to the development of its groundbreaking Mobility Mentoring platform. Since its release in 2009, Mobility Mentoring has been nationally recognized for creating significantly improved outcomes in earnings, educational attainment, and family stability in extremely low-income families. Program impact has been so robust that government has advanced application of the model in TANF, Housing, Post-secondary Education, and Early Intervention settings, and a community of practice of more than 50 organizations has implemented the Mobility Mentoring practices nationally and internationally. Beth received her Master’s Degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and her Ph.D. in non-profit strategy from Harvard’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. She has taught non-profit strategy and implementation at the graduate level for more than two decades at Harvard University, Brandeis University, and the New England Conservatory of Music.

She has received numerous awards including the 2013 World of Difference Award by the International Alliance for Women for her work on women’s empowerment. She currently serves as a member of the US Partnership for Mobility from Poverty, a national commission supported by the Gates Foundation and examining promising new approaches to close the opportunity divide. She also serves as an advisor to the World Bank where she recently helped create and taught in their new online course, Using Psycho-social Approaches to Improve Livelihoods Programs. Her article, “Re-thinking Poverty” was named one of the top articles of 2014 by the Stanford Social Innovation Review.

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Selected Publications

Babcock, Elisabeth and Ruiz de Luzuriaga, Nicki. “Families Disrupting the Cycle of Poverty: Coaching with an Intergenerational Lens”, Economic Mobility Pathways, July 2016

Babcock, Elisabeth. “Rethinking Poverty: Recent discoveries in brain science shed light on what holds the poor back—and on how to help them get ahead”, Stanford Social Innovation Review, fall 2014. Named a top SSIR article of the year.

Babcock, Elisabeth. “Using Brain Science to Create New Pathways Out of Poverty”, Crittenton Women’s Union, January 2014.

Babcock, Elisabeth. “Mobility Mentoring: New Approaches to Economic Mobility”, Crittenton Women’s Union, April, 2012.

Babcock, Elisabeth. “Your Nonprofit Construction Manager: Complex Solutions Need Dedicated Project Managers,” Stanford Social Innovation Review, Summer 2009.

Babcock, Elisabeth and Watt, Hope. “Keeping Elders Home: New Lessons Learned About Supporting Frail Elders In Our Communities,” Massachusetts Health Policy Forum Issue Brief #17. Waltham, MA: Brandeis University, 2002.