Lessons Learned

All of Pew’s projects begin with sound planning and rigorous design. This process is ongoing and includes engaging experts from inside and outside the organization. 

Once a project is approved and implemented, its progress is continuously tracked by project staff and reviewed each year by Pew’s board and senior leadership. This annual reassessment provides our staff with an opportunity to reflect on the progress of their work and either reaffirm or revise their objectives, strategies, milestones, and timelines. 

Strategic plans are not carved in stone, nor are they useful if left on the shelf. As such, annual plans are an important means of keeping strategies up to date and responsive to what is being learned through implementation in the field. Impact is measured through a rigorous and independent evaluation of the overall program to assess its return on investment and inform decisions about next steps, including changing the methodology and goals of the project or choosing not to move forward.

We report regularly on our experience in Trust magazine and online. Recent reviews include:

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Lessons Learned

Saving the Land

An evaluation of Pew's work in land conservation initiatives

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Lessons Learned

Saving the Land

An independent evaluation found that Pew’s campaign to conserve wild lands in Canada and Australia was successful in sustaining global biological diversity.

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Lessons Learned

Corrections Policy

A look at Pew's work in corrections reform

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Lessons Learned

Corrections Policy

Today, Pew works with interested states and a diverse set of partners to diagnose the factors driving prison growth and provide policy audits that identify options for reform based on solid research, promising approaches, and best practices.

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Lessons Learned

Expanding Pre-k Education

An evaluation of Pew’s pre-kindergarten initiative

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Lessons Learned

Expanding Pre-k Education

New research on child development fueled the movement for pre-kindergarten education in the 1990s by emphasizing the importance of early learning and the untapped capacity of young minds. In 2001, Pew developed a seven- to 10-year plan to seek approval of policies for universal, high-quality early education in four to six states as well as increased federal funding to support it.

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Lessons Learned

Making Every Vote Count

An evaluation of Pew’s military and overseas voting project

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Lessons Learned

Making Every Vote Count

In 1952, President Harry S. Truman asked Congress to improve the absentee voting program for Americans serving in the military. “When these young people are defending our country,” he said then, “the least we at home can do is make sure they are able to enjoy the rights they are being asked to fight to preserve.”

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