“We had to ask ourselves: How do we respond to complexity that was always there but is now heightened? What knowledge is relevant in practice, and how do we produce that knowledge for use in the practice world?”
President’s Comment: Effective Programs are Not Enough, We Need Structural Change to Reduce Inequality
Since 2015, the William T. Grant Foundation has funded research on programs, policies, and practices that reduce inequality in youth outcomes. We have supported a diverse pool of highly accomplished researchers, including some who have produced affirmative causal evidence on specific ways to reduce inequality (and others who have provided equally valuable evidence on what […]
By bringing together university researchers with practitioners and community members, RPPs in education help to ensure that the processes and outcomes of research directly enrich educational practice and policy in ways that community members most desire.
Even to a casual observer, the research-practice partnerships “tent” has expanded considerably since the seminal 2013 paper by Coburn et al., Research-Practice Partnerships: A Strategy for Leveraging Research for Educational Improvement in School Districts.
RPPs have the potential to forge relationships that lead to new possibilities for racial justice. However, they also run the risk of reproducing the very inequities that many claim to challenge. To avoid the second scenario, we need to confront racial injustice directly and build RPPs that are committed to dismantling it.
Research-Practice Partnerships in Education: The State of the Field expands on the 2013 white paper Research-Practice Partnerships: A Strategy for Leveraging Research for Educational Improvement in School Districts by scanning the current landscape of partnerships, identifying points of variation, and outlining shared principles.
At UC-Berkeley, where I trained in clinical-community psychology and have served as a professor for almost two decades, our recent strategic plan framed our public mission as: …a commitment to egalitarian and democratic values; to research and scholarly work that serves our community, our state, our nation, and the world; to providing access for students […]
In partnership with the Spencer Foundation and the Forum for Youth Investment, on June 10, we hosted a 90 minute panel discussion, “Power, Possibility, and Equity in Research Practice Partnerships.” RPPs have been an important approach to research that seeks to center issues of practice and the voices of educators in the research process by […]
Since 2014, the Foundation has focused much of its grantmaking toward supporting studies that examine programs, policies, and practices to reduce inequality in youth outcomes. Subtle as it is, the nuance here—calling for researchers to investigate specific strategies that can ameliorate unequal outcomes—nevertheless represents a pivot from the long tradition of social science research that […]
Social scientists are producing thousands of studies relevant to policy decisions, and policymakers are making thousands of decisions that would benefit from research evidence. Policymakers prefer to hear directly from researchers about their findings (Scott, 2021), so why is it that a disconnect often exists? What does the science say about how researchers could more […]
During the COVID pandemic, policy debates about how to address the crisis have often been portrayed as scientific knowledge in competition with political rhetoric for public attention. Yet even in this unprecedented case, rarely has evidence of only a single type been used in policy arguments. Rather scientific research about virus transmission and vaccines has […]
Hosted by the Foundation and the Forum for Youth Investment on March 11, 2021, this webinar focuses on how concepts such as the perceived objective nature of evidence, the positionality of the researcher in policymaking, and the role of power and politics in the use of research evidence are critical to understand as we study […]
Can a model that supports collaboration between the scientific and policy communities improve the use of research evidence in child and family policymaking?
Critical race theory provides a useful lens for understanding how racism pervades our research and policy institutions and ways we might reconstruct them in more equitable ways. On October 1, the Foundation hosted a virtual panel discussion, “Critical Race Perspectives on the Use of Research Evidence,” which featured three researchers offering ideas about how to […]
As evidence continues to mount regarding the central role of close human connection to everything from our mental health to how long we live, the idea that we can use the endogenous capacity for connection and support among youth provides a bright spot in our efforts to address inequality in our society.