Redefining data science skill, biased policy decisions, and data strategy.
decision bias in food-poverty policy

1. Biased analysis → Misunderstood cause-effect In Biased Ways We Look at Poverty, Adam Ozimek reviews new evidence suggesting that food deserts aren’t the problem, behavior is. His Modeled Behavior (Forbes) piece asks why the food desert theory got so much play, claiming “I would argue it reflects liberal bias when it comes to understanding […]

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Health innovation, foster teens, NBA, Gwyneth Paltrow.

1. Behavioral economics → Healthcare innovation. Jaan Sidorov (@DisMgtCareBlog) writes on the @Health_Affairs blog about roadblocks to healthcare innovation. Behavioral economics can help us truly understand resistance to change, including unconscious bias, so valuable improvements will gain more traction. Sidoro offers concise explanations of hyperbolic discounting, experience weighting, social utility, predictive value, and other relevant […]

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Bitcoin for learning, market share meaninglessness, and fighting poverty with evidence.

1. Bitcoin tech records people’s learning. Ten years from now, what if you could evaluate a job candidate by reviewing their learning ledger, a blockchain-administered record of their learning transactions – from courses they took, books they read, or work projects they completed? And what if you could see their work product (papers etc.) rather […]

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$15 minimum wage, evidence-based HR, and manmade earthquakes.

Photo by Fightfor15.org 1. SPOTLIGHT: Will $15 wages destroy California jobs? California is moving toward a $15/hour minimum wage (slowly, stepping up through 2023). Will employers be forced to eliminate jobs under the added financial pressure? As with all things economic, it depends who you ask. Lots of numbers have been thrown around during the […]

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Rapid is the new black, how to ask for money, and should research articles be free?

1. #rapidisthenewblack The need for speed is paramount, so it's crucial that we test ideas and synthesize evidence quickly without losing necessary rigor. Examples of people working hard to get it right: The Digital Health Breakthrough Network is a very cool idea, supported by an A-list team. They (@AskDHBN) seek New York City-based startups who […]

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‘Evidence-based’ is a thing. It was a very good year.

2015 was kind to the 'evidence-based' movement. Leaders in important sectors – ranging from healthcare to education policy – are adopting standardized, rigorous methods for data gathering, analytics, and decision making. Evaluation of interventions will never be the same. With so much data available, it's a non-stop effort to pinpoint which sources possess the validity, […]

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Social program RCTs, health guidelines, and evidence-based mentoring.

 1. Evidence → Social RCTs → Transformational change More progress toward evidence-based social programs. The Laura and John Arnold foundation expanded its funding of low-cost randomized controlled trials. @LJA_Foundation, an advocate for evidence-based, multidisciplinary approaches, has committed $100,000+ for all RCT proposals satisfying its RFP criteria and earning a high rating from its expert review […]

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ROI from evidence-based government, milking data for cows, and flu shot benefits diminishing.

1. Evidence standards → Knowing what works → Pay for success Susan Urahn says we've reached a Tipping Point on Evidence-Based Policymaking. She explains in @Governing that 24 US governments have directed $152M to programs with an estimated $521M ROI: "an innovative and rigorous approach to policymaking: Create an inventory of currently funded programs; review […]

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5 practical ways to build an evidence-based social program.

Notes from our founder's recent presentation on practical ways for social programs to become evidence-based. Get the slides: How Can Social Programs Become Evidence-Based? 5 Practical Steps. #data4good Highlights: Recent developments in evidence-based decision making in the nonprofit/social sector. Practical ways to discover and exchange evidence-based insights. References, resources, and links to organizations with innovative […]

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Evidence handbook for nonprofits, telling a value story, and Twitter makes you better.

1. Useful evidence → Nonprofit impact → Social good For their upcoming handbook, the UK's Alliance for Useful Evidence (@A4UEvidence) is seeking "case studies of when, why, and how charities have used research evidence and what the impact was for them." Share your stories here. 2. Data story → Value story → Engaged audience On […]

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