Research

Turn to CIS for custom research to find, analyze, and deliver actionable public policy information.

Talk to me:

  • To explore public policy issues for better decision-making and performance
  • To obtain facts and documentation from validated sources
  • To understand the information that matters to your stakeholders
  • To get a handle on media coverage of the issues.

Sample Projects

(See also: CIS reading list.)

  • A federal agency launched an online journal on jail issues to attract website visitors as well as share insights and information. Connie recruited authors, edited their submissions, and curated other online content. The online journal became the most highly-viewed section of the agency’s website.
  • For a national professional organization, Connie interviewed 22 jail administrators to learn their strategies for cost control and wrote an article on the findings. Other agencies were able to cut costs by adopting the ideas presented.
  • A federal agency needed to match its training program schedule to its clients’ needs. The client group consists primarily of leaders and managers in state and local correctional agencies. Connie led a team that designed a survey instrument and collected data from more than 500 respondents across the U.S., and she wrote the report of findings. The report validated some aspects of the agency’s training and helped it become more responsive to constituent needs.
  • A U.S. congressional committee was drafting legislation intended to influence states’ practices on prison sentences and early supervised release. At the same time, state legislatures were drafting bills to respond to the Congress’s intent and thereby become eligible for future funding. Connie led a team that talked with legislative staff in every state to monitor the progress of their legislation and compiled findings in daily “snapshot” reports. The project helped the Congress to enact a law that the states found workable; serious criminals were kept in prison for a longer time, with benefits for public safety.
  • A state corrections agency sought to examine institutional behavior and recidivism outcomes for inmates who participated in a new program focused on taking responsibility for one’s decisions and actions, compared with inmates who completed other cognitive and/or life skills programming. Connie assisted in the project team’s exploration of data sources to support the analysis and recommended methods for conducting the research. The agency began improving its program participation data as a first step toward the full evaluation.

 

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