|Advancing the Use of Evidence and Economics|
in State Government Policymaking
|How can state governments make better use of the growing base of evidence about “what works” and thereby provide taxpayers improved returns on their dollars?
To provide an answer, this project builds on the successful steps Washington State has taken in criminal justice, juvenile justice, education, child welfare, and several other significant areas of state government policymaking. The project is funded by the MacArthur Foundation and Pew Center on the States.
In April 2012, the Institute delivered to the Legislature an updated and expanded return on investment analysis regarding what works in the following areas:
Previous benefit-cost analyses by the Institute examined impacts on outcomes from individual policy choices. The current project involves building a “portfolio” of policy choices in order to forecast the overall impact on outcomes given a combination of policies and programs.
The Institute has developed a software-based application that allows analysts to examine the cost and benefits of various policy choices that impact these outcomes. In past years, representatives from other states have contacted us with an interest in duplicating Washington’s approach. This project incorporates a novel idea to take advantage of this market demand: a new software-based application that allows other states to tailor the Washington approach for their state.
Thus, the twin goals of the project are to:
Lead Researcher: Steve Aos, (360) 586-2740