Building Evidence: Support for Causal Studies to Evaluate Social Programs and Policies

Funding Agency:
Arnold Ventures

Arnold Ventures (AV) is a philanthropy dedicated to improving the lives of all Americans through evidence-based policy solutions that maximize opportunity and minimize injustice. AV focuses on improving systems where outcomes are falling short, incentives are misaligned, and the time is right for change. By funding rigorous research, we strive to better understand the root causes of problems and build the evidence about what works to solve them. Using this research, we advocate for policy reforms at all levels of government and build durable, bipartisan coalitions to drive lasting change and impact.

The Evidence and Evaluation team has been at the forefront of AV’s mission to inform policy solutions through an evidence-based lens. We are driven by the core belief that by increasing the body of evidence about ‘what works’ – while also identifying programs and policies that do not demonstrate impact – we create opportunities for government to better target limited resources and drive improved outcomes. 

The Evidence and Evaluation team aims to identify, evaluate, and scale evidence-based solutions targeting the nation’s most pressing social problems. This funding targets the first two phases of that goal – identifying and evaluating potential solutions – and is geared toward studies examining the causal effects of a policy, program, or intervention that aligns with key AV policy areas. Causal research employing strong, quasi-experimental methods are a critical component of the evidence-building process and are important for increasing the knowledge base for decision-makers and stakeholders. Examples of causal research methods include natural experiments, regression discontinuity, difference-in-differences, and instrumental variable designs.

This Request for Proposals (RFP) aims to bolster the knowledge base about potentially effective policies, programs, and interventions by funding researchers to conduct rigorous, causal research that aligns with key AV policy areas. 

We seek studies that will advance the knowledge base within key AV policy areas, including higher education, infrastructure, contraceptive choice and access, and public finance.

Deadline for Letter of Interest: June 1, 2024




Social Sciences

External Deadline

June 1, 2024