Evidence-Informed Practice

At the Mack Center, we define Evidence Informed Practice broadly:

  • Evidence: Includes multiple sources of internally and externally generated data and information.
  • Informed: Includes staff all levels of the agency
  • Practice: Involves cognitive, relational, action, and compliance oriented activities.

The Mack Center’s most recent research on evidence-informed practices investigates the perceptions and experiences of managers in public sector human service organizations.

Our Evidence-informed Practice initiative began in 2006 with the a Special Issue in the journal of Health and Social Policy on the post-welfare reform environment related to the status of low-income families, low-income neighborhoods that related poverty to place, promising programs serving low-income families, and promising practices).

Subsequently, we published a series of structured literature reviews in the Journal of Evidence-based Social Work  on an array of child welfare issues (racial/ethnic disproportionality, risk and safety assessment, family assessment instruments, child and youth well-being, measuring outcomes, substance abuse interventions, parent education, and the federal child welfare performance indicators). In addition these literature reviews highlighted evidence for management practice (organizational change, frontline perspectives, dissemination and utilization, impact on organizational cultures, and knowledge management).