Behrmann has more than 10 years of experience in the implementation of large-scale research studies. Currently, she is focused on leading the implementation of and technical assistance for Strengthening the Implementation of Responsible Fatherhood Programs (SIRF), a federally funded study that seeks to improve recruitment and attendance within Responsible Fatherhood programming by using a continuous cycle of evidence-building, implementation, and adaptation. Previously, she worked on the Building Bridges and Bonds (B3) project, and two large-scale national evaluations that include some of the most promising models serving pregnant women, new mothers, and their infants, the Mother and Infant Home Visiting Program Evaluation (MIHOPE) and MIHOPE-Strong Start.
Prior to joining MDRC and turning her focus to domestic policy, Behrmann spent approximately five years working on the development, implementation, and management of impact evaluations in the international development field. She served in several capacities with Innovations for Poverty Action, including as Philippines Country Director. She holds a BA from Connecticut College and a master of international affairs degree from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA).
Customer Journey Mapping as a Tool to Identify Barriers to Program ParticipationJuly, 2022
To identify ways to bolster participation in fatherhood programs, the Strengthening the Implementation of Responsible Fatherhood Programs project used “customer journey mapping,” a process that focuses on the needs and goals of participants. This document describes and illustrates each of five steps in the mapping process.Report
An Introduction to the Strengthening the Implementation of Responsible Fatherhood Programs (SIRF) StudyMarch, 2022
This report summarizes activities in the first two years of the Strengthening the Implementation of Responsible Fatherhood Programs (SIRF) study (2019 to 2021). SIRF aims to identify and test approaches to improving programs’ recruitment, engagement, and retention of fathers using rapid learning cycles.Report
Findings from the B3 Exploratory Study of the DadTime InterventionSeptember, 2021
This report describes a randomized field trial of an app designed to be integrated into a fatherhood curriculum. The app offered reminders, planning tools, and encouragement to participants. The study found no evidence that the app improved attendance, either for the first session or overall.Issue FocusApril, 2020
Programs across the country must adjust to working remotely while serving clients in the context of COVID-19, and it’s a challenge — especially if your work typically depends on in-person contact. Here are some tips to help run remote group meetings with staff, stakeholders, and participants in this uncertain, unsettling time.Issue FocusFebruary, 2020
One-time training rarely results in long-term shifts in working practices, but remote learning communities can help reinforce new lessons and promote lasting change. In this post, we explore how two MDRC programs use online, video conferencing and telephone connections to help participants across the country further their professional growth.Brief
The Building Bridges and Bonds (B3) StudyApril, 2017
This practitioner brief describes three new approaches in the B3 evaluation of enhancements to Responsible Fatherhood programs: a cognitive behavioral workshop that builds skills for employment stability; Just Beginning, an interactive approach to high-quality parenting; and DadTime, a mobile app to encourage active participation by fathers with their children.Report
An Early Look at Families and Local Programs in the Mother and Infant Home Visiting Program Evaluation-Strong Start
Third Annual ReportApril, 2016
MIHOPE-Strong Start is the largest random assignment study to date examining the effects of home visiting services on birth and health outcomes and health care use. This report describes a partial sample of 1,200 families, explores the priorities and practices of the study programs, and discusses program recruitment.
ProjectsDina A. R. Israel, Michelle S. Manno, Charles Michalopoulos, Rebecca Behrmann, Meghan McCormick, Patrizia Mancini, Viktoriya Syrov, Xavier Alemañy, Diego Quezada, Emily Marano
The Testing Identified Elements for Success in Fatherhood Programs (Fatherhood TIES ) project hopes to answer the question: What are the elements of fatherhood programs that lead to better outcomes for the fathers who take part in them?
Fatherhood programs are designed to help fathers connect with their children, improve fathers’ relationships with their...Dina A. R. Israel, Xavier Alemañy, Rebecca Behrmann, Emily Brennan, Virginia Knox, Michelle S. Manno, Emily Marano, Meghan McCormick, Charles Michalopoulos, Frieda Molina, Diego Quezada, Keri West, Samantha Wulfsohn, Donna Wharton-Fields
Over the last three decades, MDRC has established itself as a leader in providing technical assistance to organizations that deliver services to fathers through such projects as Parents’ Fair Share , Healthy Marriage and Responsible Fatherhood ( HMRF ) Training and Technical Assistance , Strengthening the Implementation of Responsible Fatherhood Programs ( SIRF ) , and...Charles Michalopoulos, Dina A. R. Israel, Michelle S. Manno, Emily Brennan, Emily Marano, Donna Wharton-Fields, Erika Lundquist, Rebecca Behrmann, Kureem Nugent, Yana Kusayeva, Diego Quezada
Since 2006, Responsible Fatherhood programs across the country have received federal funding administered by the Administration for Children and Families, Office of Family Assistance within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. These programs aim to promote positive father-child interactions, improve parents’ relationship with each other and their capacity...Melanie Skemer, Dan Bloom, Dina A. R. Israel, Louisa Treskon, Douglas Phillips, Rebecca Behrmann, Caroline Mage, Jennifer (Jenny) Hausler, Yana Kusayeva, Cassandra T-Pederson, Jayce Helpley
The Office of Child Support Enforcement launched the Procedural Justice-Informed Alternatives to Contempt ( PJAC ) demonstration to test the efficacy of incorporating procedural justice principles into child support practices as a cost-effective alternative to contempt. In this context, contempt is a legal action involving the use of civil court proceedings against...Dina A. R. Israel, Michelle S. Manno, Dan Bloom, JoAnn Hsueh, Charles Michalopoulos, Virginia Knox, Erika Lundquist, Electra Small, Rebecca Behrmann, Samantha Wulfsohn, Douglas Phillips, Patrizia Mancini, Emily Brennan, Jillian Verrillo, Bret Barden, Kureem Nugent
Fathers play a unique role in their children’s lives and development, but some fathers face personal or societal barriers to positive involvement with their children — such as low levels of education, stigma from criminal records, declining wages for low-skilled men, or family instability. Responsible Fatherhood programs aim to improve the well-being of low-income...Virginia Knox, Charles Michalopoulos, JoAnn Hsueh, Desiree Principe Alderson, Dina A. R. Israel, Erika Lundquist, Electra Small, Rebecca Behrmann, Anne Warren, Samantha Xia, Kelly Saunders, Ilana Blum, Jessica Kopsic, Noemi Altman, Caroline Mage, Helen Lee
Adverse birth outcomes result in significant emotional and economic costs for families and communities. One promising avenue for helping expectant women is home visiting programs, which work with parents to promote prenatal care and improve infant health. The Mother and Infant Home Visiting Program Evaluation-Strong Start ( MIHOPE -Strong Start) will evaluate the...Virginia Knox, Charles Michalopoulos, JoAnn Hsueh, Desiree Principe Alderson, Dina A. R. Israel, Erika Lundquist, Electra Small, Carolyn Hill, Rebecca Behrmann, Ximena Portilla, Anne Warren, Samantha Xia, Kelly Saunders, Ilana Blum, Mallory Undestad, Emily Davies, Cullen MacDowell, Marissa Strassberger, Sharon Rowser, Livia Martinez, Helen Lee
Home visiting programs operate around the country to prevent child maltreatment, improve maternal and child health outcomes, and increase school readiness. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 authorized the creation of the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting ( MIECHV ) program, expanding federal funding of home visiting programs....