Evidence-Based Policymaking: A Guide for Effective Government

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In order that government function more effectively, there is a growing national trend toward evidence-based policy making. Funding and implementing policies and programs that have been demonstrated to work through peer-reviewed evaluation studies ensures that we are getting the maximum amount of return on investments and are serving the public in the most efficient and responsible manner possible.

The Pew-MacArthur Results First Initiative has released a new report outlining a framework for a system of evidence-based governing that can be used to reduce wasteful spending, expand innovative programs, and strengthen accountability.

The five key components to implementing evidence-based policymaking as presented in the report are:

  • Program Assessment - Systematically reviewing available evidence on the effectiveness of public programs. 
  • Budget Development - Incorporating evidence of program effectiveness into budget and policy decisions, giving funding priority to programs that deliver a high return on investment of public funds. 
  • Implementation Oversight - Ensuring that programs are effectively delivered and are faithful to their intended design. 
  • Outcome Monitoring - Routinely measuring and reporting outcome data to determine whether interventions are achieving desired results. 
  • Targeted Evaluation - Conducting rigorous evaluations of new and untested programs to ensure that they warrant continued funding. 

For more information and to download the full report visit http://www.pewtrusts.org/en/research-and-analysis/reports/2014/11/evidence-based-policymaking-a-guide-for-effective-government

The Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness at Penn State can help these efforts by providing the right tools and information to policymakers and professionals serving military families. We have reviewed the evidence base behind over 900 programs. Click here to try our interactive, searchable database: http://www.militaryfamilies.psu.edu/programs/find-programs?show=all Additionally, our Technical Assistance team stands ready to help you find, implement, and evaluate evidence-based programs and practices. Technical assistance agents may be reached through live chat, phone 1-877-382-9185, or email Monday through Friday from 9 AM until 5 PM ET.