Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation

Measurement and Evaluation

We know there's nothing Democratic or Republican about just doing what works.  So we want to cast aside worn ideological debates and focus on what really helps people in their daily lives.

- President Barack Obama, June 30, 2009


The President has made clear the importance of data-driven decision making in addressing our greatest challenges. The Administration is focused both on delivering high-performance government and increasing the emphasis on evaluations that strengthen the design and operation of programs, ultimately enabling a more effective and efficient allocation of limited government resources by investing in what works.


On Measurement and Evaluation, the Administration has:

Other Administration efforts that are vital to better measurement and evaluation include:

  • The Open Government Initiative which seeks to create more transparency, public participation, and collaboration in government, including many provisions that open up troves of valuable and useful government data.

Guiding Principles

Share Knowledge Across Stakeholders Within and Outside of Government

The Office will work with stakeholders within and outside of government to develop a greater understanding of what works and to grow the availability of good data and analysis that leads to better solutions to our toughest challenges.

Learn about the Best Solutions in Communities

The Office will seek to work in partnership with all sectors to create a society that continuously builds greater knowledge about what works to solve our toughest social challenges and where government, private philanthropists, and investors can make comparative judgments about the efficacy of social programs. This requires a common understanding of what constitutes rigorous and useful measurement and evaluation.

Continually Update Principles, Standards, and Expectations of Measurement and Evaluation

The Office will continuously work across government to update and improve frameworks and standards for measurement and evaluation to provide greater clarity, capacity, and knowledge-building for solving social problems.