State lawmakers play a major role in advancing the quality of Americans’ lives, from helping to protect the air we breathe and water we drink, to educating our children.  By researching emerging topics and developing 50-state comparisons, Pew identifies innovative approaches states are using to help solve complex challenges.  Pew also conducts extensive research and analysis to understand how states can better serve the public, and we work with states to develop data-driven, pragmatic solutions to issues such as children’s dental health, the growing costs of incarceration, the need for cost-effective, high-quality home visiting programs, public pensions, and making voting more accurate, convenient, and secure.

Recent Work

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  • To Govern by Data Requires More Than Just Facts

    Even the best data may not drive positive, lasting policy change if they aren’t properly interpreted, shared, and acted upon. That was the main takeaway from an Oct. 14 event in Denver on evidence-based governing, led by The Pew Charitable Trusts and Atlantic Media’s Route Fifty. The public forum focused on data-driven policymaking in Colorado and highlighted how the state has become... Read More

  • Behavioral Analytics Help Save Unemployment Insurance Funds

    Each year, billions of dollars in improper payments are disbursed throughout states as a result of unemployment insurance (UI) fraud and overpayments. To address this problem, New Mexico’s Department of Workforce Solutions (DWS) modernized and integrated two previously disconnected data systems and then analyzed its existing UI data in an effort to understand where in the claims process... Read More

  • Google Search Provides Election Information—Instantly

    From now until Election Day, when a user types “vote,” “where do I vote,” or other variations into the Google search engine, a box appears indicating when polls open, where to vote early, voter identification requirements, and who and what is on the ballot, based on the user’s location, as well as helpful hyperlinks to outside resources that contain additional... Read More

Our Approach

Pew applies a rigorous, analytical approach to improve public policy, inform the public, and invigorate civic life.

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