Giving Compass' Take:

• Results for America examined state policymaking across the United States based on 15 criteria to help build a roadmap to effective policymaking. 

• How can philanthropy help states move to more effective models? 

• Learn more about using evidence in decision making

The 2018 Invest in What Works State Standard of Excellence sets a national standard—a “north star”—for how state governments can consistently and effectively use data and evidence in budget, policy, and management decisions to achieve better outcomes for their residents.

  • Results for America identified 88 leading and promising data-driven and evidence-based practices, policies, programs, and systems in effect in April 2018 in 30 states across the country.
  • Five states are recognized as leading the way with their data-driven and evidence-based examples: Colorado, Minnesota, Oregon, Tennessee, and Washington.
  • The State Standard of Excellence consists of 15 criteria: Strategic Goals, Performance Management / Continuous Improvement, Data Leadership, Data Policies / Agreements, Data Use, Evaluation Leadership, Evaluation Policies, Evaluation Resources, Outcome Data, Evidence Definition and Program Inventory, Cost-Benefit Analysis, Use of Evidence in Grant Programs, Innovation, Contracting for Outcomes, and Repurpose for Results.

The 2018 Invest in What Works State Standard of Excellence informs policymakers and the public about state governments’ use of data, evidence, and evaluation to invest taxpayer dollars in what works. By identifying specific efforts currently under way in state governments, Results for America hopes to facilitate the broader adoption of evidence-based policymaking in state governments across the country.