Our Vision

The University of Michigan Youth Policy Lab helps community and government agencies make better decisions by measuring what really works. We’re data experts who believe that government can and must do better for the people of Michigan. We’re also parents and community members who dream of a brighter future for all of our children. At the Youth Policy Lab, we’re working to make that dream a reality by strengthening programs that address some of our most pressing social challenges.

We recognize that the wellbeing of youth is intricately linked to the wellbeing of families and communities, so we engage in work that impacts all age ranges. Using rigorous evaluation design and data analysis, we’re working closely with our partners to build a future where public investments are based on strong evidence, so all Michiganders have a pathway to prosperity.

Five core values provide the foundation for our work:

  1. Quality: We are dedicated to the highest quality data analysis and evaluation.
  2. Partnership: We put our partners’ priorities at the center of our work.
  3. Empowerment: We help partners get comfortable using data to improve their work.
  4. Equity: We believe that everyone deserves a fair chance at a good life.
  5. Outcomes: We measure outcomes so that programs and policies are based on evidence of what really works.

At the University of Michigan, we are surrounded by some of the nation’s leading experts on nearly every social challenge and as a public institution, we are committed to applying that knowledge to the public good. For more information about our work, please contact us at: youthpolicylab@umich.edu