How Washington, D.C., brings science into local government

October 23, 2019

How, in a nutshell, do you describe The Lab @ DC?

Jenny Reed, D.C.’s Budget and Performance Management Director (left); Sam Quinney, The Lab @ DC’s Director (middle); and Chrysanthi Hatzimasoura, Senior Social Scientist with The Lab.

Jenny Reed, D.C.’s Budget and Performance Management Director (left); Sam Quinney, The Lab @ DC’s Director (middle); and Chrysanthi Hatzimasoura, Senior Social Scientist with The Lab.

Then, based on what agencies submit, The Lab looks at the academic research out there and validates it. We use that to have a conversation with the agencies. It doesn’t necessarily mean that if your program doesn’t have a huge number of randomized control trials to support it that we’ll say no, but it does mean we have an opportunity to say: “How will we collect data and evidence to measure performance of this program?” And, “Is this something where we should embed The Lab from the beginning to do an evaluation?”

Talk about the methods you use.