LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 7, 2017) — The University of Kentucky’s Ken Troske played an important role in the formulation of the report released today in Washington, D.C. by the Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking.
Troske, associate dean for graduate programs and outreach and the Richard W. and Janis H. Furst Endowed Chair of Economics in the Gatton College of Business and Economics, is one of 15 members of the commission. Members were appointed by the president, House speaker, the House minority leader, the Senate majority leader, and the Senate minority leader. Members include individuals with experience as academic researchers, data experts, program administrators, and privacy experts.
The Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking (CEP) was established to develop a strategy for increasing the availability and use of data in order to build evidence about government programs, while protecting privacy and confidentiality.
The CEP was created by the bipartisan Evidence-Based Policymaking Commission Act of 2016, jointly sponsored by Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wisconsin) and Senator Patty Murray (D-Washington), and signed by President Barack Obama on March 30, 2016. The act recognizes that better use of existing data may improve how government programs operate. Through the course of the commission’s work, members studied how data, research, and evaluation are currently used to build evidence, and how to strengthen the government’s evidence-building efforts.
Members applied their diverse range of experience and multidisciplinary expertise to study several key issues related to the use of survey and administrative data:
- Existing barriers to accessing and using data government already collects
- Strategies for better integrating existing data with appropriate infrastructure and security, to support policy research and evaluation
- Practices for monitoring and assessing outcomes of government programs
- Whether a data clearinghouse could enhance program evaluation and research opportunities
During the course of its work, the commission solicited input from stakeholders, including federal agencies, researchers, program evaluators, program administrators, advocacy organizations, foundations and nonprofit organizations, and the business community.
Troske is no stranger to serving on nationally important panels in the nation’s capital. He previously served as one of only five members of the Congressional Oversight Panel in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis. That group’s task was to assess the existing condition of America’s financial markets and the regulatory system as well as to closely monitor the actions of the Treasury Department and financial institutions to determine if their actions are in the best interest of the American economy.
“Serving on the CEP was a very rewarding experience,” Troske said. “I learned an enormous amount from my fellow commissioners about data access, privacy and security. I truly believe that if the recommendations in our report are adopted we would see a significant improvement in the efficiency of government programs at all levels in this country, while also enhancing data security and better protecting the privacy of data providers.”
The full report can be accessed by going to www.cep.gov.
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