Human-centered Design for Human Services (HCD4HS), 2018 - 2021

In this project, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is exploring the application of Human-centered Design (HCD) across its service delivery programs at the federal, state, and local levels. To date, little is known regarding what HCD looks like in the context of human services, the requirements for implementation across a range of programs; the measurable outcomes and effectiveness of HCD approaches; the evaluability of HCD approaches; or the sustainability of HCD approaches.

The overall purposes of the project are to:

  • define human-centered design in the context of delivery of human services;
  • identify programs that are currently implementing or have recently implemented human-centered design approaches in human services programs, and describe the current state of the field;
  • conduct a pilot study to help understand the feasibility of this approach in human services programs, the requirements for implementation, the evaluability, sustainability, and key outcomes of interest to ACF programs.

OPRE has contracted with Child Trends, with subcontracts to Anthro-Tech, Inc., and MEF Associates, to conduct this work.

The pilot study is registered on the Open Science Framework under the title Applying Human-centered Design for Human Services Visit disclaimer page .

Point(s) of contact: Erin Cannon and Kathleen Dwyer.

Related Resources

  • Is your program facing challenges engaging children and families in service delivery?
  • Are you facing staff turnover?
  • Do children and families have unmet needs you would like to better address?
  • Do you wish you spent less time on paperwork and more time on service delivery?

To help identify potential solutions to problems like these, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) invites nominations of ACF program offices, state- or county-administered human services programs, and local ACF grantees to participate in a pilot study under the Human Centered Design for Human Services (HCD4HS) project. Programs may nominate themselves to participate. Nominations are due by December 5, 2019.