New Report on Using Rigorous Evidence in Policymaking in Economics and Finance

With another budget and appropriations season upon us, please see BPC’s report on evidence based policy. Evidence-based policymaking requires the use of reliable data to measure the outcomes of government-funded programs to ensure the best and most efficient use of our limited federal resources.

Last Congress, under the leadership of House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), Congress authorized the creation of the 15-member Commission on Evidence-Based Policymaking which will release its recommendations later this year. The commission is charged with “conduct[ing] a comprehensive study of the data inventory, data infrastructure, and statistical protocols related to federal policymaking and the agencies responsible for maintaining that data” and how to improve those data systems.

BPC’s white paper provides an overview of evidence-based policymaking in Congress and proposes a broad framework for increasing its use in Congress. Later this year, BPC will issue recommendations on how to increase the use of evidence-based data in federal policymaking.

Please let me know if you need further information about evidence-based policymaking or BPC’s report.

May 8, 2017
Contact: Toby Zakaria
(202) 379-1627
Twitter l @tobyzakaria

Why Using Rigorous Evidence in Policymaking Matters

Washington, D.C.– Lawmakers have made significant strides toward using more rigorous evidence in the policymaking process, which can increase the potential for achieving bipartisan support.

The Bipartisan Policy Center in a new report, Congress and Evidence-Based Policymaking, explains what evidence-based policymaking is and why it matters. The goal is to compile a base of evidence upon which policymakers can rely to target scarce public resources to those policies with the greatest chance of success.

The report offers ideas for creating an evidence-based culture in Congress and creating incentives to use evidence.

“The common thread weaving through initiatives that have used rigorous evidence in the legislative process is strong bipartisan support,” G. William Hoagland, senior vice president at the Bipartisan Policy Center, said. “Rigorous evidence of what works has the potential to forge a consensus in a variety of policy areas.”

“Federal programs should improve the lives of those they serve as effectively as possible, and at the lowest possible cost,” Sandy Davis, senior advisor at BPC, said. “Establishing a consistent link between policy goals and outcomes could help improve government efficiency and effectiveness.”