15 Mar 2022

Press Release

Democratizing our Data Challenge Winners

Chevy Chase, MD – The Coleridge Initiative, Inc. announced the first-round winners of the Democratizing our Data: A Challenge to Invest in Data and Evidence-based Policy on Tuesday, March 15. The Democratizing our Data Challenge was designed to build on successful investments made by government agencies to collaborate, develop, and scale tools and practices—such as dashboards, reemployment portals, applied data analytics training programs, and data models—in order to have better evidence that informs education and workforce policy.

Ten teams from 21 major agencies and seven universities have been funded to develop actionable information about pressing issues related to people seeking to enter or re-enter the workforce, including low-income workers and learners, at-risk youth, and formerly incarcerated individuals.  

“The first round of the data challenge, launched in September, was a huge success and garnered an enormous amount of interest,” said Julia Lane, chief scientist of the Coleridge Initiative. “The winning proposals showed that state government agencies are eager and able to collaborate with many types of organizations to produce useful products of value. There is enormous willingness to explore new domains, such as the training of formerly incarcerated individuals, K-12 education, and credentials. We’re looking forward to the results–and to new proposals in Round 2.”

The ten winning teams will move immediately to develop and scale their innovative approaches to understanding employment outcomes. Their work will be highlighted at a national meeting, Multi-state Data Collaboratives: From Projects to Products to Practice, on March 30-31.  A series of lightning talks will provide a brief summary of each project from 2:05-2:55pm Eastern Time; more in-depth conversations with the community are featured the morning of March 31. Register here to attend. And check the Data Challenge website regularly for updates on the teams’ progress.

The second round of the Democratizing our Data Challenge is launched on March 15, 2022, and is also intended to inspire collaboration between states and partners to produce actionable, evidence-based products to inform policy. State agencies, postsecondary institutions, nonprofits with data and research capabilities, and mission-driven private organizations are eligible and encouraged to submit a Letter of Intent (LOI) by June 15, 2022. For more information and to apply visit the Democratizing Our Data Challenge website.

Democratizing our Data Challenge Round 1 Winners

Transitions in Education to Workforce

  • Expanding the Multi-State Postsecondary Report Dashboard: Collaborative Education to Workforce Flows: Led by Kentucky Center for Statistics, this collaboration will expand the Multi-State Postsecondary Report dashboard to include Indiana and Tennessee postsecondary completers, view regional student flow patterns, and gain greater insight into the relationships of state policies on postsecondary and workforce outcomes, with breakdowns by various demographic groups and measures of “quality” employment.
  • Eastern States Longitudinal Data Collaborative: Led by Rhode Island, New Jersey, and Virginia, this proposal will collaborate with Kentucky to bring the Multi-State Postsecondary Report to the eastern states. The dashboard will use postsecondary and workforce data to provide insight into education and employment outcomes and improve cross-state policymaking.
  • Implementing a Value Data Framework Institute for Higher Education Policy: This proposal will conduct an applied data analytics training class to implement the Institute for Higher Education Policy’s Postsecondary Value Framework, which establishes an empirical basis for understanding the return on investment in postsecondary education, particularly by race/ethnicity, income, and gender. The training, meant for state agency staff and other policy stakeholders, will use microlevel data from up to three participating states to develop a common data model and code that are easily scalable to other states.

    The Value of Credentials in the Workforce
  • Education and Credentialing of Childcare Workers in Illinois: This proposal would explore and develop cross-state replicable tools to better understand and monitor the connection between the education of childcare workforce and their employment dynamics, including public-facing dashboards and detailed data for program administrators through an innovative new tiered-access approach.
  • Expanding Multi-State Postsecondary Report Dashboard with Workforce Credentials and Students without Degrees: This proposal will build the capacity of the Multi-State Postsecondary Report by incorporating data on workforce credentials and students without degrees. Specifically, the Ohio Education Research Center will develop the updated dashboard to include data on career and technical education, registered apprenticeships, individuals with stranded credits, and individuals with “stranded credits” but not a full degree.
  • Indiana Credential Outcome Transparency: This proposal creates a technical blueprint for mapping the Credential Engine schema to wage, employment, and training provider data, and a prototype “Return on Credential Investment” app that enables youth, unemployed, displaced, and transitioning workers to better understand high demand career pathways.

    Unemployment to Reemployment Portals
  • ARDATA Unemployment Claims Resource Planning Dashboard: This proposal, led by Arkansas, will fully implement and expand a prototype Unemployment Claims Resource Planning Dashboard developed through a prior Applied Data Analytics training program sponsored by the Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration.
  • Education and Training as a Gateway to Reemployment of the Unemployed: Through the Lens of Equity: Led by Illinois, this proposal will develop measures and tableau visualizations on unemployment spell behavior by education categories of local unemployment insurance (UI) claimants to understand how the progression of certification weeks impacts the reemployment probability by education level. The proposal will incorporate the National Directory of New Hires for timely measures of reemployment activity, and will augment the work through a national Applied Data Analytics training.
  • Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development: This proposal will bring the Unemployment-to-Reemployment portal to Wisconsin, informed by an inaugural Applied Data Analytics training course, with an interest in cross-state workflows between Illinois and Michigan. The training will help teach workforce boards and agency staff how to use the portal, and to deepen partnerships and collaboration among states and agencies.

    Building Better Understanding and Use of K-12 Data
  • Chicago: Inclusive Economy Labs: This proposal will create data dashboards linking Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Community Colleges data to inform understanding of transitions from education to workforce.
  • Heldrich Center for Workforce Development: This proposal will develop a publicly available data model for state K-12 data submissions to the ADRF, outline use cases, describe existing data models, and create technical documentation detailing tables, elements, options set, and entity relationships.

Support for the Democratizing our Data Challenge and the Multi-State Data Collaboratives convening is provided by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Ascendium, Overdeck Family Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation.

About The Coleridge Initiative, Inc.

The Coleridge Initiative is a not-for-profit organization, originally established at New York University, which became fully independent in August 2020. Coleridge is at the forefront of transforming the empirical foundation of social science research and policymaking in the United States. Their work on building new technologies is combined with training programs and consulting services that help build agency capacity to better serve society.

The Coleridge Initiative works with government agencies to break down the barriers to accessing confidential data. They manage a secure computational research platform, the Administrative Data Research Facility (ADRF), to provide access to sensitive and confidential microdata. Since the organization was founded, they have worked with over 250 federal, state, and local agencies and trained almost 1,000 agency staff. For more information on Coleridge, the ADRF, training programs, and events, visit: www.coleridgeInitiative.org