Roundtable: Advancing Evidence-Based Policy at the State and Local Level
(Tools of Analysis: Methods, Data, Informatics and Research Design)

Friday, November 3, 2017: 8:30 AM-10:00 AM
McCormick (Hyatt Regency Chicago)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Roundtable Organizers:  Julia Chabrier, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Moderators:  Julia Chabrier, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Speakers:  Anjali Chainani, City of Philadelphia, Sara Heller, University of Pennsylvania, David C Phillips, University of Notre Dame and Andrea Bickley, South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services

Despite increasing awareness of the value of evidence-based policy and data-driven decision-making, state and local policymakers often do not have the capacity or resources to feasibly and rigorously test policies and programs in their jurisdictions. Additionally, state and local policymakers face uncertainty about how to find and partner with experienced and trusted researchers. As a result, many state and local governments perceive rigorous evaluation as infeasible. Such a situation severely limits evidence-based decision-making for these jurisdictions and others across the country that might benefit from the evidence generated by new research. This roundtable will highlight examples of state and local governments that are successfully collaborating with researchers to design high-quality and feasible randomized evaluations that can inform our understanding of how to tackle challenging social problems. These state and local policymakers and researchers will share their perspectives on the lessons learned about how to overcome common barriers to getting evaluations off the ground and the value of these partnerships. Topics will include accessing administrative data, developing surveys or other tools to measure outcomes, collaborating with service providers and other stakeholders, and identifying feasible opportunities to embed rigorous evaluation into the operations of policies and programs.