The MIP Project examined how families in two large metropolitan areas have fared in the economic circumstances of the time in which the study was conducted. The study re-interviewed participants of two earlier studies, one in Chicago and another in Los Angeles. The study compared the answers of participants at the time of the first and second interviews. The study was conducted with funds from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation awarded to Harvard University and UCLA. IMPAQ completed the telephone surveys and Research Support Services, a research organization in the Chicago area, completed the face-to-face follow-ups in Chicago and L.A. for Harvard University.
Of the two studies, the one in Los Angeles was of main interest to IMPAQ because it was first attempted by telephone. A field test of 300 cases began in late May 2011, where the IMPAQ Survey Center attempted to complete interviews by telephone with participants of the most recent wave of the Los Angeles Family and Neighborhood Survey (LA FANS).