Arnold Ventures: Building Evidence: Causal Studies to Evaluate Social Programs and Policies

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

This RFP 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 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.

Interested researchers should submit a letter of interest for AV consideration (maximum of three pages) via the Arnold Ventures applicant portal.