In this commentary published by Spotlight on Poverty, MDRC President Gordon Berlin makes the case for creating a more flexible safety net that continues to reward work when jobs are plentiful, provides employment to poor families when jobs disappear, and begins to address the problem of stagnant wages at the low end of the labor market.
This paper explores the use of instrumental variables analysis with a multisite randomized trial to estimate the effect of a mediating variable on an outcome.
Despite the growing popularity of the use of regression discontinuity analysis, there is only a limited amount of accessible information to guide researchers in the implementation of this research design. This paper provides an overview of the approach and, in easy-to-understand language, offers best practices and general guidance for practitioners.
Using an alternative to classical statistics, this paper reanalyzes results from three published studies of interventions to increase employment and reduce welfare dependency. The analysis formally incorporates prior beliefs about the interventions, characterizing the results in terms of the distribution of possible effects, and generally confirms the earlier published findings.
A Counterintuitive Approach to Reducing Poverty and Strengthening Families
In this article in The Future of Children journal, MDRC President Gordon Berlin answers the question: If you could do one thing to reduce poverty in America, what would it be? He explores the potential advantages of expanding the federal Earned Income Tax Credit to all low-wage adults who work full time — whether they have children or not and whether they marry or not.
No universal guideline exists for judging the practical importance of a standardized effect size, a measure of the magnitude of an intervention’s effects. This working paper argues that effect sizes should be interpreted using empirical benchmarks — and presents three types in the context of education research.
MDRC’s research on Career Academies, First Things First, Project GRAD, and Talent Development suggests that the twin pillars of high school reform are structural changes to improve personalization and instructional improvement.