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Topic Overview

OPRE regularly archives research and evaluation data for secondary analysis, consistent with the ACF evaluation policy, which promotes rigor, relevance, transparency, independence, and ethics in the conduct of evaluation and research. One practice that OPRE implements to support these principles is the responsible archiving of data for secondary analysis. Archiving evaluation data for appropriate secondary use by researchers promotes rigor and transparency by encouraging the external validation and reproducibility of published results or findings.

OPRE takes appropriate measures to safeguard the privacy and confidentiality of individuals contributing data for research throughout the archiving process, consistent with ACF’s core principle of ethics. Research data may be made available as public use files (when the data would not likely lead to harm or to the re-identification of an individual) or through restricted access. Restricted access files are de-identified and made available to approved researchers either through secure transmission and download, virtual data enclaves, physical data enclaves, or restricted online analysis. 

Archived Datasets

Many datasets from past OPRE projects are stored at the Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research (ICPSR) at the University of Michigan. Data relating to child welfare topics are stored at the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect, at Cornell University.

Self-Sufficiency/Employment

Health Profession Opportunity Grants Evaluation, United States (2013-2016)

The Health Profession Opportunity Grants (HPOG) Program was created to provide education and training to Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) recipients and other low-income individuals for occupations in the healthcare field that pay well and are expected to either experience labor shortages or be in high demand. HPOG programs are expected to target skills and competencies demanded by the healthcare industry; support career pathways; result in an employer- or industry-recognized certificate or degree; combine supportive services with education and training services to help participants overcome barriers to employment; and provide services at times and locations that are easily accessible to targeted populations.

In 2010, ACF awarded the first round of HPOG awards to 32 organizations located across 20 states to carry out five-year programs in their areas. Five awards were made to tribal organizations. HPOG is authorized as a demonstration program with a mandated federal evaluation. As part of its multi-pronged evaluation strategy to document the operations and assess the success of the HPOG program, data collected for the HPOG National Implementation Evaluation and the HPOG Impact Study will be archived in Fall 2019. The evaluation strategy aims to provide information on program implementation, systems change, outcomes, and impacts.

A restricted use data file will be available at ICPSR in Fall 2019, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/37290.

The federal point of contact is Nicole Constance.

For more information on the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/evaluation-portfolio-fo....

Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education Evaluation, United States (2011-2016)

The Pathways for Advancing Careers and Education (PACE) study was designed to produce rigorous evidence for policymakers, practitioners, and researchers about the effectiveness of nine career pathways approaches that sought to increase credentials, employment, and self-sufficiency among low-income, low-skilled Americans. Each program-specific evaluation included an implementation study that examined the design and operation of the program and enrolled students' participation patterns, and an impact study that used an experimental design to measure differences in educational and employment outcomes between individuals randomly assigned to a group that could receive services from the PACE program (treatment group) and a group that could not but could participate in other services in the community (control group). Program impacts were measured 18 to 24 months following random assignment, depending on the program. Follow-up impact reports will cover three and six years after random assignment. The study was led by Abt Associates, in partnership with MEF Associates, The Urban Institute, and the University of Michigan. OPRE is continuing to follow-up with PACE study participants over a longer-term follow-up period.

A restricted use data file will be available at ICPSR in Fall 2019, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/37289.

The federal point of contact is Nicole Constance.

For more information on the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/pathways-for-advancing-....

Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency Project (2014-2016)

This dataset includes administrative data and experimental data related to 5 sites in the Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency Project.

A restricted access file is available at ICPSR, at https://www.openicpsr.org/openicpsr/project/100389/version/V1/view

The federal point of contact is Emily Schmitt.

For more information on the project, see https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/behavioral-intervention...

Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project (2004-2008)

Philadelphia, PA

The purpose of this study was to build a knowledge base about special models that target welfare recipients who face serious barriers to employment. The study in Philadelphia tested two employment strategies. The first employment strategy, administered by the Transitional Work Corporation (TWC), was a paid transitional employment program that combined temporary, subsidized employment with work-related assistance. The second employment strategy, the Success Through Employment Preparation (STEP) program, focused on assessing and treating employment barriers before participants obtained a job.

This dataset was part of the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project. The data are available at ICPSR: https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/33784

The federal point of contact is Girley Wright.

For a description of the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/enhanced-services-for-t....

Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO), New York City

The purpose of this study was to build a knowledge base about special models that target welfare recipients who face serious barriers to employment. This study evaluated the effectiveness of the Center for Employment Opportunities (CEO) in New York City, which is an employment program for formerly incarcerated individuals. The CEO evaluation aimed to determine whether CEO's transitional jobs and other services are more effective than basic job search assistance. The study this dataset is a part of is called the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project.

A public use data file is available at ICPSR, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/33783.

The federal point of contact is Girley Wright.

For more information on the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/enhanced-services-for-t....

Working toward Wellness, Rhode Island

This dataset is part of the Enhanced Services for the Hard-to-Employ Demonstration and Evaluation Project. The purpose of this study was to build a knowledge base about special models that target welfare recipients who face serious barriers to employment. This study analyzed the effectiveness of the Rhode Island "Working toward Wellness" (WTW) program, a one-year program that provided telephonic care management to depressed parents receiving Medicaid in Rhode Island.

A public use dataset is available at ICPSR, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/33782/summary

The federal point of contact is Girley Wright.

For more information on the project, see https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/enhanced-services-for-t...

Employment Retention and Advancement (ERA) Project (2000-2007)

The goal of Employment Retention and Advancement (ERA) was to identify and rigorously test a diverse set of innovative models designed to promote employment stability and wage or earnings progression among current or former welfare recipients or other low-income groups. As part of ERA, over a dozen different program models were evaluated using random assignment research designs.

The federal point of contact for this project is Mark Fucello.

The survey and administrative data are available at ICPSR: https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/33181/summary

For a description of the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/employment-retention-an...

National Evaluation of Welfare-to Work Strategies (2005)

NEWWS was a study of the effectiveness of eleven mandatory welfare-to-work programs in seven locales: Atlanta, Georgia; Columbus, Ohio; Detroit and Grand Rapids, Michigan; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma; Portland, Oregon; and Riverside, California. Program impacts were evaluated by comparing outcomes for a randomly assigned experimental group subject to program requirements with outcomes for control groups.

This dataset was part of the The National Evaluation of Welfare-to-Work Strategies (NEWWS) study. The data are available at the National Center for Health Statistics Research Data Center

https://aspe.hhs.gov/national-evaluation-welfare-work-strategies-newws

The federal point of contact for this project is Mark Fucello.

For a description of the project, see: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/resource/the-national-evaluation-of-welf...

Family Strengthening

Supporting Healthy Marriage Evaluation: Eight Sites within the United States (2003-2011)

This dataset includes baseline, 12 month follow up and 30 month follow up data from the Supporting Healthy Marriage (SHM) evaluation which tested the effectiveness of a program aimed at strengthening low-income couples' marriages as one approach for supporting stable and nurturing family environments and parents' and children's well-being.

The restricted access file is available at ICPSR, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/34420

The federal point of contact is Samantha Illangasekare.

For more information on the Supporting Healthy Marriage (SHM) project, see https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/supporting-healthy-marr...

Community Healthy Marriage Initiative Survey for Six Cities (2007-2010)

This dataset includes data from two rounds of surveys to evaluate community-level impacts of various relationship and marriage education programs, comparing three cities which received ACF grant funding to three cities that did not.

The restricted access file is available at ICPSR, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/34719

The federal point of contact is Samantha Illangasekare.

For more information on the Community Healthy Marriage Initiative, see https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/evaluation-of-community...

Building Strong Families (BSF) Project Data Collection (2005-2008)

This dataset includes baseline, 15 month follow up and 36 month follow up data from the Building Strong Families (BSF) project, which examined the effectiveness of programs designed to improve child well-being and strengthen the relationships of low-income couples through relationship skills education.

The restricted access data file is available at ICPSR, at https://www.icpsr.umich.edu/icpsrweb/ICPSR/studies/29781/summary

The federal point of contact is Samantha Illangasekare.

For more information on the Building Strong Families project, see https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/research/project/building-strong-families

Refugee Assistance

Annual Survey of Refugees (2016)

In the Spring of 2017, ORR completed its 50th Annual Survey of Refugees (ASR). The data from the ASR offer a window into respondents’ first five years in the United States and show the progress that refugee families made towards learning English, participating in the workforce, and establishing permanent residence.

Public use files are available with site registration at https://www.openicpsr.org/openicpsr/project/104642/version/V2/view;js...

The federal points of contact are Xiayun Tan (ORR) and Nicole Deterding (OPRE).

Early Childhood Datasets

Over 300 Early Childhood Datasets Available

OPRE archives over three hundred datasets on young children, their families, and the programs that serve them. In September 2018, OPRE awarded a contract with ICPSR to serve as the central repository for those datasets. The Child and Family Data Archive will develop and provide ongoing support to facilitate sharing data from previous, current, and future OPRE-supported grants and contracts relevant to early childhood. Additionally, this effort includes optional activities supporting the archiving of datasets and supporting materials in other ECE-relevant fields such as economic self-sufficiency, welfare, employment, co-parenting, marriage, family formation and stability, and fatherhood involvement. These datasets will continue to be available at www.researchconnections.org and gradually transition to the Child and Family Data Archive by early 2020. Until then, continue to go to www.researchconnections.org for transition news and data access.

Examples of Early Childhood Datasets include:

Family & Child Experiences Study (FACES 1997, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2009, 2014)

Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) Policies Database (2008-2013)

National Survey of Early Care and Education (NSECE 2012): Head Start Early Learning Mentor Coach Study (2011); Early Head Start Family & Child Experiences Survey (Baby FACES 2009)

Child Welfare

National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW) (1997-2014 and 2015-2022)

The National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW) is a nationally representative, longitudinal survey of children and families who have been the subjects of investigation by Child Protective Services. There have been two cohorts of children enrolled in the survey, which makes available data drawn from first-hand reports from children, parents, and other caregivers, as well as reports from caseworkers, teachers, and data from administrative records. NSCAW examines child and family well-being outcomes in detail and seeks to relate those outcomes to experience with the child welfare system and to family characteristics, community environment, and other factors.

In September 2015, the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation in collaboration with the Children’s Bureau awarded a contract to RTI International to carry out the third cohort of NSCAW (NSCAW III). An overarching goal of NSCAW III is to maintain the strengths of previous work, while:

  1. better positioning the study to address the changing child welfare population, and
  2. increasing the project’s overall utility.

Data collection for NSCAW III began in 2018.

Archived datasets from NSCAW I and NSCAW II are available from the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect (https://www.ndacan.cornell.edu/datasets/datasets-list-nscaw.cfm).

The federal point of contact is Christine Fortunato.

National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect (NIS-4) (2005-2006)

In collaboration with the Children's Bureau, the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation in the  Administration for Children and Families conducted the Fourth National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect (NIS-4). The National Incidence Studies have been conducted approximately once each decade, beginning in 1974, in response to requirements of the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act. Although the Children's Bureau collects annual state-level administrative data on official reports of child maltreatment, the NIS studies are designed to estimate more broadly the incidence of child maltreatment in the United States by including both cases that are investigated by the authorities as well as those that are not. A unique contribution of the NIS has been the use of a common definitional framework for classifying children according to types of maltreatment as well as the severity of maltreatment. Key demographic characteristics of maltreated children and their families are also collected, which enables us to provide information about which children are most at risk.

Archived data from NIS-4 are available from the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect at https://www.ndacan.cornell.edu/datasets/dataset-details.cfm?ID=147.

The federal point of contact is Christine Fortunato.

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