MDRC Experts Presenting at APPAM Fall Research Conference in Washington, DC, November 8-10


The Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM) is holding its Annual Fall Research Conference — “Evidence for Action: Encouraging Innovation and Improvement” — in Washington, DC, November 8-10, 2018. A number of MDRC researchers are presenting papers and participating in panels and roundtables (see below).

Please visit our exhibit table #220 for the latest MDRC reports and information about job opportunities — and to learn about MDRC’s Center for Applied Behavioral Science and Center for Data Insights.

Thursday, November 8

8:30 AM – 10:00 AM

Panel: Promoting Program Improvement through TANF Data Innovation, 8224 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Assessing and Addressing Barriers to Data Usage Among TANF Agencies,” Robert Goerge (University of Chicago)

  • “Integrating Data to Strengthen TANF,” Adelia Jenkins (University of Pennsylvania)

  • “Creating a Secure Environment to Integrate Data and Build Data Science Skills,” Julia Lane (New York University)

  • “Delivering on the Promise of Data Driven Program Improvement: The TANF Data Innovations Project,” Richard Hendra (MDRC)

  • Panel Chair: Kinsey Dinan (New York City Department of Social Services)

  • Discussant: Nicole Deterding (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

8:30 AM -10:00 AM

Panel: Impacts of Two-Generation Publicly Funded Preschool Programs on the Outcomes of Low-Income Parents and Their Children, Wilson A - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “The ‘Longer’ Term Effects of a Two-Generation Human Capital Program on Parents and Children in Head Start,” P. Lindsay Chase-Lansdale, Terri J. Sabol, Teresa Eckrich Sommer, Elise Chor (Northwestern University), Jeanne Brooks-Gunn (Columbia University), Hirokazu Yoshikawa (New York University), Christopher King, (University of Texas, Austin) and Amanda Morris (Oklahoma State University)

  • “Exploring Variation in Head Start Program Effects on Parents’ Interactions with Children” Christina M. Padilla (Georgetown University)

  • “Examining the Two-Generation Impact of Child Care Subsidies on Maternal Education and Children’s Kindergarten Outcomes,” Owen N. Schochet and Anna Johnson (Georgetown University)

  • Panel Chair: Anna Johnson (Georgetown University)

  • Discussant: JoAnn Hsueh (MDRC)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Panel: Community/Economic Development Interventions: How Do Residents, Neighborhoods, and Cities Fare? Coolidge - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “The Impact of HOPE SF on Adult Economic Mobility,” Carolina Reid (University of California, Berkeley)

  • “Making Collaboration Work: Local Strategies for Addressing Poverty and Inequality,” Michael Rich (Emory University), and Robert Stoker (George Washington University)

  • “Changing Places: An Impact Examination of Three Community Revitalization Initiatives” Brett Theodos (Urban Institute)

  • “Exploring the Tradeoffs Local Governments Make in the Pursuit of Economic Development and Equity,” Eric Stokan (University of Maryland, Baltimore County), Aaron M. Deslatte (Northern Illinois University), and Megan E. Hatch (Cleveland State University)

  • Panel Chair: Joseph Firschein (Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System)

  • Discussants: Jonathan Spader (Harvard University) and James Riccio (MDRC)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Panel: Emerging Causal Evidence on Career and Technical Education Program Impacts and Measuring the Factors That Support Their Effectiveness, 8212 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “An Early Look at the Effects of Career and Technical Education Programs in New York City,” Rebecca Unterman (MDRC), James J. Kemple (New York University), and Shaun Dougherty (University of Connecticut)

  • “Measuring Program Characteristics, Experiences and Quality in New York City’s Career and Technical Education System,” Shaun Dougherty, Samuel Kamin (University of Connecticut), James J. Kemple, and John R. Sludden (New York University)

  • “The Causal Impact of Attending a Career Technical High School on Student Achievement, High-School Graduation and College Enrollment,” Shaun Dougherty, Eric Brunner, and Stephen L. Ross (University of Connecticut)

  • “Building a Framework for and Measuring Participation in Connecticut’s CTE Programs,” Shaun Dougherty and Samuel Kamin (University of Connecticut)

  • Panel Chair: Kate Kreamer (Advance CTE)

  • Discussants: Steven W. Hemelt (University of North Carolina) and Corinne Alfeld (National Center for Education Research)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Panel: Home Visiting Innovations for Research and Practice, Tyler - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Innovation Toward Precision Home Visiting,” Jill Filene, Matthew Poes, Susan Zaid (James Bell Associates, Inc), Kyle Peplinski, Lauren Supplee (HRSA), and April Wilson (Child Trends)

  • “How Local Home Visiting Programs in MIHOPE Addressed Mental Health Issues with Families: Translating Evidence-Based Research to Home Visiting Stakeholders,” Ximena A. Portilla, Mallory K. Undestad (MDRC), and Sarah Shea Crowne (Johns Hopkins University)

  • “Continuous Quality Improvement and Central Intake to Enhance Engagement in New Jersey Home Visiting,” Anne Lilly, Jack Dagg, Lori Burrell, Anne Duggan (Johns Hopkins University),Lenore Scott, Daniela Hellman Guarda (New Jersey Department of Children and Families), and Lakota Kruse (New Jersey Department of Health)

  • Panel Chair: Nancy Margie (Administration for Children and Families)

  • Discussant: Virginia Knox (MDRC)

1:45 PM-3:15 PM

Panel: The Behavioral Interventions for Child Support Services Project: RCT Findings and Perspectives from the Field, Tyler - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Dates and Deadlines: Behavioral Strategies to Increase Engagement in Child Support,” Yana Kusayeva (MDRC)

  • “Simplify, Encourage, Personalize: Behavioral Strategies to Increase Engagement in Child Support,” Angela Gaffney (MEF Associates)

  • “Applied Behavioral Science in the Child Support Program: A Practitioner Perspective,” Alix Haik-Bruno (Sacramento County)

  • Panel Chair: Dan Bloom (MDRC)

  • Discussant: Crystal Hall (University of Washington) and Gretchen Lehman (Federal Office of Child Support Enforcement)

Friday, November 9

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Panel: Using Evidence to Design and Improve Employment Coaching Interventions, Johnson - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Cutting-Edge Science and What It Could Mean for Human Service and Workforce Programs,” LaDonna Pavetti (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

  • “Applying Scientific Evidence on Executive Skills in the Mygoals Workforce Coaching Program,” Nina Castells (MDRC)

  • “Goal4 It!™: A Behavioral Science-Informed Approach to Achieving Economic Independence,” Michelle Derr (Mathematica Policy Research)

  • Discussant: Sophie Sahaf (LIFT)

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Roundtable: Creating Moves to Higher Opportunity Neighborhoods Using Housing Choice Vouchers, Harding - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderators: Kristen D. Watkins, Abdul Latif Jameel (Poverty Action Lab North America)

  • Speakers: Peter Bergman, (Columbia University), Sarah Oppenheimer (King County Housing Authority), James Riccio (MDRC), and Greg Russ (Minneapolis Public Housing Authority)

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Panel: Switching, Phasing-in and Improving: Multi-Armed Randomized Experiments with Multiple or Time-Contingent Components, Marriott Balcony B - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “The Design of Making Pre-K Count and High Fives: Two-Stage Random Assignment at Different Levels,” Robin Jacob (University of Michigan), Marie-Andree Somers, Shira Mattera (MDRC) and Pamela Morris (New York University)

  • “A Switching Replication with Multiple Treatments: An Example and Practical Guide,” Kate Miller-Bains, Kylie L. Anglin, Emily Wiseman, Rebekah Berlin, Julie J. Cohen, and Vivian C. Wong (University of Virginia)

  • “Insights from the Health Profession Opportunity Grant Program’s Three-Armed, Multi-Site Experiment for Program and Policy Learning and Evaluation Practice,” Laura Peck (Abt Associates, Inc.), Nicole Constance, and Hilary Forster (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

  • “Using Multi-Armed Experiments to Test “Improvement Versions of Programs: When Beneficence Matters,” Andrew P. Jaciw and Thanh Nguyen, (Empirical Education, Inc.)

  • Panel Chair: Eric Hedberg (NORC at University of Chicago)

  • Discussant: Rob Olsen (Westat)

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Panel: Building Evidence for Responsible Fatherhood Programs and Programs Serving Justice Involved Parents, Tyler - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Parents and Children Together: Effects of Four Responsible Fatherhood Programs on Low-Income Fathers,” Sarah A Avellar, Reginald Covington, Quinn Moore, and Ankita Patnaik (Mathematica Policy Research)

  • “Innovative Approaches to Serving Low-Income and Justice Involved Fathers: Early Implementation Findings from Building Bridges and Bonds’ Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Justice Involved Individuals Seeking Employment,” Michelle Manno and Dina Israel (MDRC)

  • “Waiting for Them to Come Home: A Review of the Literature on Promising Practices for Promoting Wellbeing and Self-Sufficiency Among Families Affected By Parental Incarceration,” Bright Sarfo (MEF Associates), Meghan McCormick, and Emily Brennan (MDRC)

  • Panel Chair: Nicole Constance (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

  • Discussant: Cynthia Osborne (University of Texas, Austin)

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Panel: Toward a Better Future: New Evidence on Three Approaches to Linking Disconnected Youth to Employment and Education, Jefferson - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Improving the Outcomes of Youth with Medical Limitations: Evidence from the National Job Corps Study,” Heinrich Hock, Dara Lee Luca, Tim Kautz, and David Stapleton (Mathematica Policy Research)

  • “Laying a Foundation: Final Impacts from the Youthbuild Evaluation,” Cynthia Miller, Danielle Cummings, Megan Millenky (MDRC), Andrew Wiegand (Social Policy Research Associates), and David Long (Princeton Associates)

  • “Building Evidence across Generations of a Promising Youth Development Program: Year up,” David Fein (Abt Associates, Inc.), Rebecca Maynard (University of Pennsylvania), and Garrett A. R. Yursza Warfield (Year Up)

  • “Forging a Path: Thirty-Month Impact Findings from an Evaluation of New York City’s Young Adult Internship Program,” Danielle Cummings, Melanie A. Skemer (MDRC), and Mary Farrell (MEF Associates)

  • Panel Chair: Jean-Marie Callan (New York Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity)

  • Discussant: Molly Irwinc (U.S. Department of Labor)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Roundtable: Reporting about Research in an Age of Polarized Politics and Fake News, Madison A - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderator: Jenni Owen (Office of North Carolina Governor)

  • Speakers: John Hutchins (MDRC), J.B. Wogan (Governing magazine), and Sarah Sparks (Education Week)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Roundtable: Implementation Research Using Multiple Methods in Large-Scale, Multi-Site Randomized Controlled Trials, Marriott Balcony B - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderator: Carolyn Hill, (MDRC)

  • Speakers:  Virginia Knox, (MDRC), Demetra Nightingale (Urban Institute), Lauren Supplee (Child Trends), and Alan Werner (Abt Associates, Inc.)Moderator: Matthew Stagner (Mathematica Policy Research)

1:45 PM-3:15 PM

Super Session: 40 Years of Evidence for Action at APPAM and in the Field, Lincoln 4 - Exhibit Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderator: Matthew Stagner (Mathematica Policy Research)
  • Speakers: Kathleen Flanagan (Abt Associates, Inc.), Avi Benus (IMPAQ International, LLC), Gordon Berlin (MDRC), Sarah Wartell (Urban Institute), and Paul Decker (Mathematica Policy Research)

1:30 PM-3:00 PM

Roundtable: Building and Using Evidence-Based Practices: Emerging Approaches across Policy Domains, Wilson A - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderator: Andrew Feldman, Grant Thornton

  • Speakers: Beth Boulay (Project Evident), Mary Kay Gugerty (University of Washington), Carolyn Hill (MDRC), and Alexandra Resch (Mathematica Policy Research)

3:15 PM-4:45 PM

Panel: Using Field Experiments to Examine Parent and Provider Decisions in the ECE Market, Wilson B - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “The Demand for Teacher Characteristics in the Market for Child Care: Evidence from a Field Experiment,” Casey H. Boyd-Swan (Kent State University), and Chris M. Herbst (Arizona State University)

  • “Experimental Evidence on the Demand for Child Care Quality,” Erdal Tekin, James Gordon (American University), and Chris M. Herbst (Arizona State University)

  • “Can Friendly Text Messages Help Parents Navigate a Complex Application Process for Early Education Programs? Experimental Evidence from New Orleans,” Lindsay Bell Weixler, Alica Gerry (Tulane University), Daphna Bassok, Justin Brian Doromal (University of Virginia), Jon Valant (Brookings Institution)

  • “Cutting through Complexity: Using Behavioral Science to Help Parents Choose Quality Child Care in Indiana,” Nadine Dechausay (MDRC)

  • Panel Chair: Chris M. Herbst (Arizona State University)

  • Discussants: Susanna Loeb (Stanford University) and Chris Doss (Stanford University)

3:15 PM-4:45 PM

Panel: US Social Safety Net Programs and Policies and the Wellbeing of Children and Adults, 8206 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Do SNAP Work Requirements Work?” Timothy F. Harris (Illinois State University)

  • “Welfare Time Limits and Participation,” Gabrielle Pepin (Michigan State University)

  • “Effect of Insurance Subsidies on Health Insurance Coverage,” Yue Li (State University of New York, Albany)

  • “The Intergenerational Effects of Head Start,” Esra Kose (Bucknell University)

  • Panel Chair: James P. Ziliak (University of Kentucky)

  • Discussants: Charles Michalopoulos (MDRC) and Christopher A. Swann (University of North Carolina, Greensboro)

3:15 PM-4:45 PM

Panel: Analytic Approaches for Identifying Effective Strategies for Improving Outcomes in Social Programs, Marriott Balcony B - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Best Practices for Detecting Treatment Effect Heterogeneity in Multisite Trials,” Luke Miratrix, Masha Bertling, Catherine Armstrong, and Ben Weidmann (Harvard University)

  • “Identifying Program Characteristics Associated with Impact Magnitude: Evidence from the Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) Evaluation,” Eleanor L. Harvill, Laura Peck and Douglas Walton (Abt Associates, Inc.)

  • “Lessons from New York City’s Small Schools of Choice about High-School Features That Promote Graduation for Disadvantaged Students,” Rebecca Unterman, Howard Bloom, Pei Zhu (MDRC), and Sean Reardon (Stanford University)

  • “Probing Impact Heterogeneity Using Machine Learning Methods in the Evaluation of Early College High Schools in North Carolina,” Fatih Unlu (RAND Corporation), Julie Edmunds, Eric M Grebing (University of North Carolina, Greensboro), and Elizabeth Glennie (RTI International, Inc.)

  • Panel Chair: Nicole Constance (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

  • Discussant: Nirav Mehta (University of Western Ontario)

3:15 PM-4:45 PM

Panel: The Next Generation of Subsidized Employment: Three Evaluations of Transitional Jobs Programs, Madison A - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “30-Month Impacts from the Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration,” Bret Barden (MDRC)

  • “The Evaluation of the Rehire Colorado Program,” Patrick Turner (University of Notre Dame), Brian Cadena, and Tania Barham (University of Colorado, Boulder)

  • “Testing Two Subsidized Employment Models for TANF Recipients in Los Angeles: Final Impact Findings,” Chloe Anderson (MDRC)

  • Panel Chair: Cindy Redcross (MDRC)

  • Discussant: Gregg Keesling (Recycle Force)

Saturday, November 10

8:30 AM-10:00 AM

Panel: Studies on TANF, 8226 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “The Impact of Different Job Search Approaches on Employment and Public Benefit Receipt for TANF Recipients,” Karin Martinson, Eleanor L. Harvill, Daniel Litwok (Abt Associates, Inc.), Alicia Meckstroth, and Alix Gould-Werth (Mathematica Policy Research)

  • “Evaluating the Use of Motivational Interviewing in Washington State’s TANF Case Management,” Christina McHugh, Brent Baxter, and Jerry Kosierowski (Washington State Department of Social and Health Services)

  • “Eligibility Versus Participation: TANF Differences By State and Region,” Susanne Macartney (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

  • “Interactions between Expansions in Medicaid Eligibility, Participation in Government Transfer Programs, and Labor Supply,” James Elwell (Cornell University)

  • Panel Chair: Sandra Danziger (University of Michigan)

  • Discussants: Carolyn Hill (MDRC) and Kathleen Moore (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Roundtable: Innovative Approaches to Fostering Social and Emotional Learning, Coolidge - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • Moderator: Stephanie M. Jones (Harvard University)

  • Speakers: David Osher (American Institutes for Research), William Corrin (MDRC), Stephanie Wu (City Year), and Heather Clawson (Communities in Schools)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Panel: Multi-Armed Trials for Informing Policy and Practice: What We’ve Learned from 50 Years of Research, Wilson B - Mezz Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Multi-Armed Trials for Informing Policy and Practice: A 50-Year Retrospective,” Larry Orr (Johns Hopkins University)

  • “Multi-Arm Tests of Welfare and Employment Programs,” Judith Gueron and Gayle Hamilton (MDRC)

  • “The Design of the RAND Health Insurance Experiment: A Retrospective,” Joseph P. Newhouse (Harvard University)

  • Panel Chair: Andrew P. Jaciw (Empirical Education, Inc.)

  • Discussant: Rebecca Maynard (University of Pennsylvania)

10:15 AM-11:45 AM

Panel: As HUD’s Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) Program Celebrates Its 25th Anniversary, What Do We Know about Program Performance? 8222 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “Building Self-Sufficiency for Housing Choice Voucher Recipients: Emerging Evidence from a Random Assignment Evaluation of the Hud Family Self-Sufficiency Program,” Nandita Verma (MDRC)

  • “Insights on the Performance of Local Family Self-Sufficiency Programs from New Hud Measures,” Lesley Freiman (Abt Associates, Inc.)

  • “Developing an Asset-Building Model for Hud’s Family Self-Sufficiency Program,” Sherry Riva (Compass Working Capital)

  • Panel Chair: Jeffrey Lubell (Abt Associates, Inc.)

  • Discussant: Barbara Sard (Center on Budget and Policy Priorities)

1:30 PM-3:00 PM

Panel: Innovation in the Criminal Justice System: Policy Lessons and Impacts of Pretrial Reforms, 8228 - Lobby Level (Marriott Wardman Park)

  • “National Criminal Justice Reform Project: Lessons from Vermont and Oregon,” Lauren Dedon (National Governor’s Association)

  • “Fines, Fees, and the Threat of Jail: The Long Reach of the User-Funded Justice System in New Orleans,” Stephen Roberts (Vera Institute of Justice)

  • “Pretrial Justice System Reform Study: Mecklenburg County, North Carolina,” Cindy Redcross (MDRC)

  • Panel Chair: Bret Barden (MDRC)

  • Discussant: Sue Ferrere (Pretrial Justice Institute)