Researching Racism and Inequality

Structural racism in the United States is a historic and ongoing threat to the lives of people of color, particularly for Black Americans. It has undermined American systems of criminal justice, health care, education, employment, and the social safety net meant to protect the most vulnerable among us. Repairing the damage will be the collective work of a nation.

For our part, we are a company dedicated to leveraging the power of data and evidence to inform policy decisions that lead to positive social change. This has been Mathematica’s work for decades—from the study of basic income that launched us to more recent examples of our research on racial disparities and other inequalities. Together with partners in the public and private sectors, we’re proud to offer relevant research and analysis that can document gaps in resources and opportunities, respond with evidence-based solutions, and illuminate a path to progress.

Studies
Filter
Hide
result(s) for All Studies are listed below
Select View
Summary

A look at projects—some ongoing—that we’ve worked on with the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation to address the pressing challenges facing families with low income.

Learn More
Summary

This report examines and documents pre- and post-release services provided to formerly incarcerated individuals in Colorado and the frequency of recidivism for those who receive reentry support.

Learn More

Data Across Sectors for Health (DASH)

Mathematica
September 30, 2019
Summary

DASH is one of several initiatives in the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s (RWJF’s) ongoing efforts to build a Culture of Health and promote health equity. This formative evaluation report includes initial results from cross-sector data sharing that were used to identify trends and patterns at the community level and address social determinants of health.

Learn More
Summary

In partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, we explored the equity-based policy changes necessary to help children from under-resourced communities thrive.

Learn More
Summary

This experimental study looked at the effects of offering free school breakfast to elementary school students regardless of family income.

Learn More
Summary

This study documented a connection between hunger and poor health among children from families living on low incomes.

Learn More
Summary

The authors of this study explore the problems stemming from a policy intended to encourage people to move into the workforce.

Learn More
Summary

In a study for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, we looked at the housing options available to former foster youth and offered recommendations for future research and policy.

Learn More
Summary

We partnered with the Walton Family Foundation to uncover evidence about how school choice options— including charter schools, vouchers, magnet schools, and district-wide choice— affect the racial and economic integration of students.

Learn More
Summary

This report, the largest and most comprehensive examination of Americans who seek emergency food relief and the charitable network that serves them, notes that more than 23 million people received emergency hunger relief from Second Harvest in 2001.

Learn More
Summary

In partnership with the Urban Institute, we researched local and state policy aimed at decreasing the number of youth offenders placed outside of their homes in institutions, boot camps, residential treatment centers, and group homes.

Learn More

Informal Child Care in Detroit

Mathematica
January 01, 2018
Summary

In partnership with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, we reviewed the landscape of informal child care options for families living on low incomes in Detroit, as well as ways to support caregivers.

Learn More
Summary

Missouri Foundation for Health launched The Right Time (TRT) in 2019 to increase contraceptive access and use to ensure women and families living in Missouri are empowered in their own health care decisions. This study sheds light on TRT's emphasis on achieving health equity, specifically achieving equitable access and outcomes for all women, regardless of income, race or ethnicity, disability status, sexual orientation, gender identity, immigration status, and age.

learn more
Summary

State and federal agencies are entering into Learning Collaboratives with the goal of increasing medical care and coverage for former foster-care youth and for justice-involved populations.

learn more
Summary

A report on using targeted technical support to help states better serve Medicaid clients.

Learn More
Summary

The Rural Welfare-to-Work Strategies demonstration focused on helping families with low incomes in rural areas find employment and achieve self-sufficiency. This report focuses on program outcomes in southern Illinois.

Learn More
Summary

In this study, we looked at the efforts of four states—Florida, Oregon, Tennessee, and Utah—to address the mental health concerns that can be a barrier to employment for welfare recipients.

Learn More
Summary

This report examines ways to help states better meet the complex needs of people with disabilities who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) benefits.

Learn More
Summary

A review of economics literature that focuses on discrimination and disparities in the labor market and in the criminal justice system.

Learn more
Summary

Partnerships between providers of child welfare services, substance abuse disorder treatment, and other social services can enhance the safety and well-being of children who are in, or might be at risk of, out-of-home placement.

learn more
Summary

This brief funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services presents recommendations created as part of the Research Development Project on the Human Service Needs of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Populations.

Learn More
Summary

To better understand the factors that influence students’ access to good teachers, we studied the number and effectiveness of teachers hired by high- and low-poverty schools.

Learn More
Summary

Our multiyear study of programs designed to help fathers living on low incomes improve their parenting skills concludes with this report featuring commentary from program participants.

Learn More
Summary

This brief looks at the well-being of LGBTQ young people aging out of foster care, comparing their economic self-sufficiency to that of their heterosexual peers.

Learn More
Summary

We studied the outcomes achieved and challenges faced by alumni of federal welfare-to-work programs.

Learn More
Summary

The round-the-clock nature of the new economy raises considerations for child care and child well-being. This study reveals how public child care assistance programs can offer a critical safety net for working parents with lower incomes (and nonstandard work hours) by helping them afford quality child care.

Learn more
Summary

Thirty-five years after the program launched, the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) revised its food packages. In this report, we evaluate the reasons for the changes and their potential effects.

Learn More
Summary

A summary of the use and effectiveness of vouchers in public programs.

Learn More
Summary

Four decades after the United States declared a war on poverty, the authors of this study looked at how poor and immigrant populations were faring, as well as the effectiveness of government programs.

Learn More
Summary

Two of the nation’s largest publicly funded employment and training programs are the Adult and Dislocated Worker programs. Over the course of a decade, we evaluated their effectiveness.

Learn More
Commentary
Filter
Hide
result(s) for All Commentary are listed below
Select View
Summary

Ronette Briefel, a senior fellow and nutritionist, summarizes the testimony she gave before the Maryland State Senate on policy to ensure year-round food security for children receiving free and reduced school meals.

Learn More

Addressing Racial Equity in Higher Education

Mathematica
December 16, 2019
Summary

Senior Researcher Julie Bruch looks at the promise of statewide initiatives aimed at making higher education more diverse and equitable.

Learn More
Summary

The Urban Institute’s Kilolo Kijakazi talks with Mathematica’s Cleo Jacobs Johnson about what policy research organizations can do to make progress on addressing structural racism in policy research.

Listen to Podcast
Summary

In 2019, we hosted the first Sadie T.M. Alexander Conference, a forum to discuss the opportunity gap faced by Black women in economics and related fields. A year later, we asked the organizers if progress was being made.

Listen to Podcast
Summary

How can child welfare agencies protect children they are unable to see in person because of pandemic restrictions? Senior Researcher Allon Kalisher and Brady Birdsong, manager of BerryDunn, explore the use of predictive modeling to spot potential risk.

Learn More
Summary

Matt Stagner, our director of human services research, writes that for the social services sector, the pandemic is a wake-up call.

Learn More
Summary

Senior Researcher Candace Miller spotlights work from activists for gender equality whom she has met around the world.

Learn More
Summary

Senior Researcher Lauren Amos shares her professional expertise, and personal experience, with racial disparities in school discipline.

Learn More
Summary

A team of Mathematica researchers shares lessons learned by working in close partnership with American Indian and Alaska Native experts and elders.

Learn More
Summary

This episode of our On the Evidence podcast focuses on life coaching as a strategy to reduce violence.

Listen to Podcast
Summary

Researcher Debra Strong and Elaine Stedt, director of the Children’s Bureau Office on Child Abuse and Neglect, explain the potential of Regional Partnership Grants to provide wraparound family services.

Learn More
Summary

Director of Foundation Engagement Kimberlin Butler recounts the legacy of Dr. Sadie Tanner Mossell Alexander, “one of the most notable figures in Black History you’ve probably never heard of.”

Learn More
Summary

Researcher Steven Malick looks at the opportunities that distance learning creates for schools and families to work together, opening the door to more culturally responsive practices.

Learn More
Summary

Researchers Joe Baker and Amanda Lechner look to past research for lessons on helping vulnerable populations in the time of COVID-19.

Learn More
Events
Filter
Hide
result(s) for All Events are listed below
Select View
Summary

Mathematica hosted Dr. Wendy Ellis, founding director of the Center for Community Resilience at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. Dr. Ellis presented on the history of systemic racism in the United States and its pivotal role in social and health disparities in the Black community.

Watch the video

Does School Choice Leave Anyone Behind?

Mathematica
November 21, 2019
Summary

Together with the Walton Family Foundation, we presented a forum comparing the experiences of children in district schools with those of their peers who take advantage of school choice options.

Watch the Video

Improving Educational Equity Through Culturally Responsive Schools

Regional Educational Laboratory Mid-Atlantic
September 17, 2019
Summary

A four-part webinar series from our partners at the Regional Educational Laboratory Mid-Atlantic looks at ways to build more diverse and equitable schools through the practice of culturally responsive education.

Register for On Demand Access
Summary

We brought together a diverse panel of experts from academia, philanthropy, and government for this conversation on fostering equity and cultural responsiveness in the areas of research and evaluation.

Watch the video

Contributing Staff

Current Mathematica team members who contributed to the studies, commentary, and events listed above.
Lauren Amos

Lauren Amos

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Megan  Hague Angus

Megan Hague Angus

Researcher

View Bio Page
Sarah  Avellar

Sarah Avellar

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Joe Baker

Joe Baker

Researcher

View Bio Page
Scott Baumgartner

Scott Baumgartner

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Julie Bruch

Julie Bruch

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Kimberlin Butler

Kimberlin Butler

Senior Director, Foundation Engagement

View Bio Page
Ryan Callahan

Ryan Callahan

Senior Survey Researcher

View Bio Page
Deborah  Chollet

Deborah Chollet

Senior Fellow

View Bio Page
Russell Cole

Russell Cole

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Angela  Valdovinos D'Angelo

Angela Valdovinos D'Angelo

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Patricia Del Grosso

Patricia Del Grosso

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Jonah Deutsch

Jonah Deutsch

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Daniel Friend

Daniel Friend

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Brian  Gill

Brian Gill

Senior Fellow

View Bio Page
Philip Gleason

Philip Gleason

Senior Fellow

View Bio Page
Daisy Gonzalez

Daisy Gonzalez

Advisory Services Analyst

View Bio Page
Jessica Harding

Jessica Harding

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Julie W. Hartnack

Julie W. Hartnack

Researcher

View Bio Page
Sheila Hoag

Sheila Hoag

Director, Business Development

View Bio Page
Emily Hoe

Emily Hoe

Researcher

View Bio Page
Pamela Holcomb

Pamela Holcomb

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Todd Honeycutt

Todd Honeycutt

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Mynti Hossain

Mynti Hossain

Researcher

View Bio Page
Cleo Jacobs Johnson

Cleo Jacobs Johnson

Senior Researcher and Manager, DEI Engagement and Outreach

View Bio Page
Matthew Johnson

Matthew Johnson

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page
Allon Kalisher

Allon Kalisher

Senior Child Welfare Lead

View Bio Page
Gretchen Kirby

Gretchen Kirby

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Amanda Lechner

Amanda Lechner

Researcher

View Bio Page
Jeffrey  Max

Jeffrey Max

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Steven Malick

Steven Malick

Researcher

View Bio Page
Shawn Marsh

Shawn Marsh

Principal Survey Researcher

View Bio Page
Annalisa Mastri

Annalisa Mastri

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Diana McCallum

Diana McCallum

Senior Director of Research and Evaluation, Human Services

View Bio Page
Alicia  Meckstroth

Alicia Meckstroth

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Sheena McConnell

Sheena McConnell

Senior Fellow

View Bio Page
Candace  Miller

Candace Miller

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Emily Moiduddin

Emily Moiduddin

Senior Director, Business Development

View Bio Page
Eric Morris

Eric Morris

Researcher

View Bio Page
So O'Neil

So O'Neil

Director, Health Philanthropy Portfolio

View Bio Page
Amy Wodarek O’Reilly

Amy Wodarek O’Reilly

Principal Managing Consultant

View Bio Page
Linda  Rosenberg

Linda Rosenberg

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Nazihah Siddiqui

Nazihah Siddiqui

Managing Consultant

View Bio Page
Peter  Schochet

Peter Schochet

Senior Fellow

View Bio Page
Colleen Staatz

Colleen Staatz

Researcher

View Bio Page
Christina  Tuttle

Christina Tuttle

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Heather  Zaveri

Heather Zaveri

Director of Learning and Strategy, Human Services

View Bio Page
Joseph Zickafoose

Joseph Zickafoose

Principal Researcher

View Bio Page
Marykate  Zukiewicz

Marykate Zukiewicz

Senior Researcher

View Bio Page

Advancing Equity Together

Discover how communities, allies, and evidence come together to shape a more equitable world.

Learn More