Policy Analysis and Engagement

Federal and state policies play a big role in the lives of children and families. They determine many things, like which families qualify for a child care subsidy, how much money is available for funding child welfare services, and what data schools are required to report publically. At Child Trends, we strive to understand the policy environment in which children and families are living, and we communicate our research to policymakers and decision-makers who can make a direct impact on their lives and well-being.

Researchers develop landscape scans of existing policies across states, identifying the key policies that impact children’s lives. They also examine the role those policies play in the outcomes and successes of our most vulnerable children.

Our strategic communications team supports the translation and sharing of our research with both state and federal policymakers. We develop short policy briefs, blogs, fact sheets, and infographics that make our research understandable and actionable. Our researchers have participated in briefings and presentations on Capitol Hill and to state legislators, met with key agency decision-makers, and facilitated convenings of state leaders to support using research to develop the strongest policies possible for children and their families.

Project Case Studies

See All Project Case Studies

Dissemination of Child Trends report: “The Invisible Ones: How Latino Children Are Left Out of Our Nation’s Census Count”

Project Description With preparation underway for the 2020 Census, a report from the Child Trends Hispanic Institute and National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) Educational Fund called for targeted efforts to accurately count young Latino children. The report revealed that more than 400,000 Latino children under age four were left uncounted in […]

Case study: Preventing youth violence

Child Trends’ groundbreaking study, Preventing Violence: A Review of Research, Evaluation, Gaps, and Opportunities, was a collaboration with the nonprofit organization Futures Without Violence, which works directly with communities to reduce violence. Futures asked us to research and document the causes of a wide range of violent behaviors throughout the United States. Published in 2014, […]