September 2017 | Lashawn Ruchburg-Hayes; Caitlin Anzelone, Nadine Dechausay with Patrick Landers

Nudging Changes in Human Services: Final Report of the BIAS Project

This is the final report (2017-23) of the Behavioral Interventions to Advance Self-Sufficiency (BIAS)  project conducted by MRDC under a contract with the federal Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation (OPRE) in which 15 state and local agencies participated.  The project consisted of identifying problems that are appropriate for behavioral interventions, designing interventions, and conducting rigorous tests — where appropriate — to determine whether the interventions improved outcomes. These tests spanned three domains: child support, child care, and work support. The problems of interest in the area of child support included increasing order modification requests by incarcerated noncustodial parents in Texas and Washington and increasing payment rates on existing child support orders in two Ohio counties.

The project’s findings suggest that small changes in, for instance, program outreach or the way that information is conveyed can help reduce some of the complexities that low-income populations face when they interact with human services agencies.


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