Sharon F. Rallis, the College of Education’s Dwight W. Allen Distinguished Professor of Education Policy and Reform, was selected to participate in the Building Bridges Initiative organized by the American Evaluation Association’s Evaluation Policy Task Force, in collaboration with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, to coincide with the 10-year anniversary of the U.S. Department of Education’s declaration of Randomized Control Trial as the gold standard for evaluation.
The Building Bridges Initiative brings together individuals who are seen as evaluation “thought leaders” who have taken different stances regarding priorities for impact evaluation, but who are willing to engage in a work group to consider appropriate methodological approaches for examination of federal and other government programs. The initiative’s immediate goal is to discuss the latest phase in the development of impact evaluation approaches; find common ground in the evaluation field where it exists; and identify areas of persistent disagreement in the evaluation field. The long-term goal of the initiative is to find areas of common ground from which to advise policy makers and other decision-makers. The first session of the Building Bridges Initiative was held May 16 in Arlington, Va.