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National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies (NEWWS), 1989-2002

Project Overview

The National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies (NEWWS) project evaluated alternative welfare-to-work strategies in seven sites (Riverside, CA; Atlanta, GA; Grand Rapids, MI; Detroit, MI; Columbus, OH; Oklahoma City, OK, and vicinity; and Portland, OR, and vicinity).

The major research questions include: (1) What were the most effective strategies for moving families from welfare to work? (2) Which strategies were most effective for different kinds of families?

Process, impact, and cost-benefit analyses were produced for each site. The impact study used a random assignment design, allowing individuals assigned to a treatment group to be compared with individuals assigned to a no-treatment control group. In addition, four of the sites had two treatment streams: three sites directly compared the impacts of a labor force attachment model, which emphasized rapid employment, with a human capital development model, which emphasized education and training; and another site compared two different case management approaches. A major substudy of the project examined impacts on children. Data were collected through administrative records (welfare receipt and Unemployment Insurance wages) and surveys.

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