Due Date: 12/31/20
Funder: Arnold Ventures
About Arnold Ventures
Arnold Ventures (AV) is a philanthropy dedicated to tackling some of the most pressing problems in the United States. They invest in sustainable change, building it from the ground up based on research, deep thinking, and a strong foundation of evidence. They drive public conversation, craft policy, and inspire action through education and advocacy. Arnold Ventures is made up of a team of more than 90 subject-matter experts headquartered in Houston with offices in New York and Washington, D.C. They work in four key issue areas: Criminal Justice, Education, Health, and Public Finance. Their work is guided by Evidence-Based Policy, Research, and Advocacy.
About the Opportunity
This Request for Proposals—a joint effort of AV’s Criminal Justice and Evidence-Based Policy initiatives—seeks grant applications to conduct randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of criminal justice programs and practices (“interventions”) in the United States that fall into one of three tiers:
- The intervention is backed by promising prior evidence suggesting it could produce sizable impacts on important criminal justice outcomes (e.g., prevent violence, reduce recidivism, minimize injustice, improve health/employment of persons formerly involved in the justice system);
- The intervention is widely adopted in practice, but has not yet been rigorously evaluated and its impacts on key criminal justice outcomes are thus largely unknown; or
- The intervention is growing in use and likely to become widely adopted, but has not yet been rigorously evaluated.
While this Request for Proposals focuses on RCTs, AV will also consider certain rigorous quasi-experimental designs when random assignment is not feasible, as discussed under “study design” in the full proposal description. Submissions are welcome in all areas of criminal justice; they especially encourage those that align with a priority area of the Criminal Justice initiative (i.e., policing, pretrial justice, community supervision, prisons, and reintegration) or with the Evidence-Based Policy initiative’s focus on areas where prior studies have identified a number of promising interventions (e.g., youth crime prevention). Their ultimate goal in this effort is to build credible evidence about “what works” to improve criminal justice outcomes and, in particular, to grow the number of criminal justice interventions rigorously shown to produce important improvements in people’s lives. Few such proven-effective interventions currently exist, and until they do, the nation will lack critical knowledge needed to move the needle on crime, injustice, and other key criminal justice outcomes.
AV asks applicants first to submit a letter of interest (maximum three pages). Applicants whose letters are reviewed favorably will be invited to submit a full proposal (maximum six pages). There is no deadline for submitting a letter of interest; applicants may submit a letter at any time via email to CrimJusticeRCTs@arnoldventures.org. AV will notify applicants within one month whether they are invited to submit a full proposal (full proposals must be invited). Applicants may use their own format, with single or double spacing, and an 11-point font or larger. The page limit does not include attached letters or other documents specifically requested in this Request for Proposals.
Proposals are accepted on a rolling basis.