As part of our efforts to enhance diversity and inclusion, Mathematica Policy Research is partnering with the Annie E. Casey Foundation (AECF) on its Expanding the Bench initiative, which is intended to increase the number of historically underrepresented minority researchers and evaluators such as African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, and underrepresented Asians.
This partnership will create opportunities this year for scholars enrolled in the foundation’s Leaders in Equitable Evaluation and Diversity (LEEAD) program to serve on Mathematica’s evaluation project teams.
The LEEAD program offers a nine-month evaluation training program for underrepresented minority scholars with significant postdoctoral research and/or evaluation experience, culminating in the opportunity for them to bid to work on existing evaluation projects at Mathematica and other partner organizations. Mathematica will select two LEEAD scholars to participate in projects from May through October of this year.
“We are excited to partner with AECF on this important initiative,” said Diane Herz, vice president and director of survey research at Mathematica, who chairs the company’s Diversity Council. “Expanding the Bench will give the LEEAD scholars an opportunity to participate in evaluation projects that have real-world impact and will help Mathematica build relationships with promising researchers from diverse backgrounds.”
Debra Joy Pérez, AECF’s vice president for research, evaluation, and learning, said, “Underrepresented minority (URM) researchers are greatly underrepresented within agencies that use knowledge to improve practice and policies in social services such as evaluation firms and policy think tanks. This lack of diversity almost certainly limits our knowledge of social problems and jeopardizes our ability to resolve them. We at AECF are thrilled that Mathematica has joined us in our commitment to advance race equity and inclusion in the evaluation field. By serving as a host site for LEEAD scholars, Mathematica is leading by example in demonstrating its appreciation for the value URM perspectives bring to evaluation firms. We applaud Mathematica for its field leadership.”
Mathematica’s participation in Expanding the Bench reflects the company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion, which has been recognized with two Excellence in Diversity Awards from the Human Resources Management Association.