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Useful to Whom? Imagining the Next Generation of Education Research Partnerships

The forum brought together thought leaders to discuss ways the field can move beyond the status quo and create space for the emergence of research-practice partnerships (RPPs). The forum featured a keynote presentation and facilitated workshop by Dr. Vivian Tseng, Senior Vice President at the William T. Grant Foundation. Read Dr. Tseng's key takeaways by clicking the button below.

What’s the Latest Thinking on RPPs?
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Past Conferences and Events

MAY 15, 2023 - Historically, our education system has fallen short of the ideal of equitable opportunities and outcomes for all young people. Reenvisioning those systems requires the innovation of educators, the passion of advocates, the astuteness of policymakers, the ingenuity of researchers, the dedication of caretakers, and the voices of youth. We believe that the exchange of ideas and knowledge will help us shape a more equitable education system.

We invite you to join the upcoming "Toward an Inclusive Future: Research, Policy, and Practice for Equity in Education'' conference to share experiences, discuss strategies, and generate new approaches to promote inclusivity and equity in education.

Christina Foti, Chief of Special Education at the NYC Public Schools, will kick off the day with a keynote presentation on the potential avenues toward inclusive, equitable education — and the challenges and opportunities of pursuing these paths in the largest school district in the country.

The event will feature presentations and panel discussions by esteemed scholars, stakeholders, and leaders and offer perspectives for understanding barriers and proposing solutions to a more equitable experience in schools. Presenters include:

  • Lindsay Romano, IES-PIRT Fellow in NYU Steinhardt in the Department of Teaching & Learning, and Audrey Trainor, Professor, NYU Steinhardt
  • Jo Alkhafaji-King, IES-PIRT Fellow in NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service
  • Richard Welsh, Professor, Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, and Neha Sobti, NYU doctoral candidate and Educational Administrator, NYC Department of Education

The panel will be facilitated by Sohini Das and Kaitlyn O'Hagan, doctoral students and fellows in the IES-PIRT program, and will feature panelists:

  • Shawn Morehead, Vice President for Grants, The New York Community Trust
  • Olga Pagan, NYU doctoral candidate and IES-PIRT alumni and Director of Programs and Research, Center for Racial Justice in Education
  • Kristie Patten, Vice Dean of Academic Affairs
  • Lucy Antoine, NYC Public School Parent
  • Rima Izquierdo, NYC Public School Parent

This conference is co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change (IHDSC), the Institute of Education Sciences-funded Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training (IES-PIRT) program, the Center for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and Methodology (PRIISM), and the Research Alliance for New York City Schools (RANYCS).

MAY 25, 2022 - The field of education research faces an opportunity to deepen its impact and reimagine its approach to science and discovery. To reimagine is to move beyond the status quo and create space for the emergence of new connections, more meaningful engagement, and greater access to knowledge. We acknowledge that achieving these goals is a significant challenge. The inequality laid bare and hastened by the pandemic requires us to build equitable and responsive partnerships that can inform and be informed by communities. The “Useful to Whom? Imagining the Next Generation of Education Research Partnerships'' forum showcased research-policy-practice partnerships paving the way for education impact.

This research-policy-practice forum is co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change (IHDSC), the Institute of Education Sciences-funded Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training (IES-PIRT) program, the Metropolitan Center for Research on Equity and the Transformation of Schools (Metro Center), the Center for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and Methodology (PRIISM), and the Research Alliance for New York City Schools (RANYCS).

OCTOBER 28, 2021 - How does a discipline move from investigating a problem to investigating responses? This question is at the heart of a new Special Collection of Socius: Sociological Research for a Dynamic World, which explores ways for social scientists to move beyond describing and quantifying the problem of inequality and to focus instead on ways to reduce it.

Social science excels at advancing our understanding of how much inequality exists, what its sources are, and what consequences ensue. But comparatively little research aims to build understanding of policies or programs that can reduce inequality. In this dynamic virtual forum, From Understanding Inequality to Reducing Inequality, co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change at New York University (NYU), the Stone Center on Socio-Economic Inequality at the Graduate Center at the City University of New York (CUNY), the Center for the Study of Wealth and Inequality at Columbia University, and the William T. Grant Foundation, Special Collection authors and discussants examine the potential of research to help build and strengthen efforts to address inequality, as well as delineate pathways through which research may lead to large-scale social change.

MAY 26, 2021 - For 200 years, we have debated the role of schools in U.S. society. Today, we face an unprecedented opportunity to reexamine long-standing assumptions and to include voices that have been marginalized in the construction of our current systems. As we struggle with the impacts of a global pandemic and ongoing racial injustice, how do we take this moment as an opportunity to re-envision the role of schools in U.S. society? How do we enact this fresh vision for the 2021-2022 school year and beyond?

Our forum aims to re-imagine a role for schools that rectifies societal inequities rather than replicates them, embraces new opportunities to meet student needs, and "builds back better" in the areas of mental health, teaching and learning, and racial and social justice. Watch the vigorous, forward-thinking conversation and call to action at this unprecedented moment, co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change (IHDSC), the Institute of Education Sciences-funded Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training (IES-PIRT) program, the Center for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and Methodology (PRIISM), and the Research Alliance for New York City Schools.

Watch the recording of Reimagining the Role of Schools in Society: A Conversation and Call to Action.

MAY 11, 2020 - Large, local datasets can inform new approaches to reducing inequality and expanding opportunity in our communities. Each year, NYU researchers analyze New York State Medicaid, New York City Department of Education, and New York City subsidized housing data to discover new patterns of family experiences and outcomes and inform new approaches to fighting poverty, reducing inequality, and expanding opportunity in our communities. NYU’s Social Science for Impact Forum featured presentations from Dr. Sherry GliedDr. Ingrid Ellen, and Dr. James Kemple about three NYU-housed datasets: New York State Medicaid (HEAL), New York City Department of Education (SCHMA), and New York City subsidized housing (CoreData). 

NYU's Social Science for Impact Forum was co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social ChangeThe Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public ServiceNYU's Institute of Education Sciences-funded Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training programNYU's Urban InitiativeCenter for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and MethodologyThe Research Alliance for New York City Schools, and NYU's Office of the President and the Cross-Cutting Initiative on Inequality.

OCTOBER 30, 2019 - In 2015, Congress asked the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to conduct a comprehensive study of child poverty in the United States, and to provide a nonpartisan, evidence-based report that would provide its assessment of the most effective means for reducing child poverty by half in the next 10 years. The National Academies appointed a committee with expertise in economics, psychology, cognitive science, public policy, education, sociology, and pediatrics to conduct the study and issue a report.

Dr. J. Lawrence Aber and Dr. Benard Dreyer served on the expert committee and co-authored A Roadmap to Reducing Childhood PovertyThe comprehensive report concludes that poverty causes negative outcomes for children, and recommends "packages" of evidence-based policies and programs that could cut the child poverty rate while increasing employment and earnings in low-income families.

On Wednesday, October 30th, Drs. Aber and Dreyer offered their perspectives on the report and discussed the proposed policies and programs with Jennifer Jones-Austin and Dr. Xavier de Souza Briggs. 

This event was co-sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social ChangeNYU Strategies to Reduce Inequality at the McSilver Institute for Poverty Policy and Research, and the Office of the President.

Check out the Recommended Reading List developed by the event's panelists and co-sponsors.

MAY 29, 2019 - When designing experiments, how should researchers ensure that organizations and individuals are treated fairly and respectfully while maintaining fidelity to the study’s goals? During data collection, how should researchers ensure protection of identifiable information and minimize intrusiveness? As they build algorithms with “big data,” how can researchers minimize the risk of demographic or cultural bias? As public agencies use larger and more detailed data systems to capture information about the use and impact of public resources, what are the ethical parameters that should guide the conditions under which these data are made available to researchers?

Co-Sponsored by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change (IHDSC), the Institute of Education Sciences-funded Predoctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training program (IES-PIRT)the Center for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and Methodology (PRIISM) and the Research Alliance for New York City Schools, this research-policy-practice conference will explore these critical ethical questions and data challenges as they relate to education, criminal justice, and interdisciplinary research.

JUNE 1, 2018 - Youth and families navigate a variety of complex systems, services, and city offices—how can researchers, agencies, and practitioners work together to improve the systems and opportunities that support vulnerable youth in New York City? This event addressed this question by assembling leaders, scholars, and policymakers from multiple sectors and agencies: NYC Department of Education Office of School Health, NYC Mayor’s Office of Immigrant Affairs, NYC Department of Probation, New York Community Trust, Advocates for Children of New York, Volunteers of Legal Service, and the Vera Institute of Justice.

This summit was co-sponsored by NYU’s Institute of Human Development and Social Change (IHDSC), the IES-funded Pre-doctoral Interdisciplinary Research Training program (PIRT), the Center for Practice and Research at the Intersection of Information, Society, and Methodology (PRIISM), and NYU’s Strategies to Reduce Inequality (SRI) initiative.

MAY 19, 2017 - Co-sponsored by NYU’s IHDSCIES-PIRT program, PRIISM, and IPK, this conference highlighted a series of NYC-based university-community partnerships that involve linkages between city agency or community organization partners and NYU graduate students and faculty around policy-/practice-driven projects designed to strengthen knowledge and action. The day was structured in parallel morning and afternoon sessions. These featured brief showcases of existing partnerships, jointly presented by key members of the partnership. Sessions also included “breakout groups” where attendees had the opportunity to engage in deeper conversations about how to conduct ethical and impactful work in the context of these partnerships. The topics of these conversations ranged from trust building to technical needs of organizations and will be inspired by the showcases.

JUNE 2, 2016 - The conference topic responded to national concern around standardized achievement test scores as sole accountability indicators and measures of student success; and capitalized on increasing knowledge of the importance of a diversity of student outcomes and ways these outcomes may be influenced by education systems, processes, and practices. The conference was organized to focus on three broad domains of student outcomes beyond achievement test scores – health (physical and mental), civic engagement, and social emotional. The research community plays a unique role in advancing knowledge on whether and how education influences outcomes beyond test scores, and in bridging research knowledge with policy and practice initiatives to enhance student development in and beyond schools.

JULY 15, 2015 - This full day meeting convened a group of distinguished state and city government policymakers, academics, policy experts, and practitioners to discuss how health reform efforts could be used to better-integrate family and child development services within health care to improve outcomes.

JUNE 3, 2014 - This conference focused on the influence of context and contextual factors on human behavior with a particular focus on the role that the settings and environments may play in shaping health, health risk behaviors, and health disparities. In many areas of health research and programming, the focus has been on person- or individual-level factors that put individuals at risk. This conference was informed by a biopsychosocial perspective of health and well-being and focused on the ways in which contextual factors (the neighborhoods, schools, family settings, and cultural contexts in which individuals engage) may play a role in these processes, in order to build a deeper understanding of health and human development, as well as to inform intentional change strategies aimed at improving health and development for individuals at risk.

APRIL 12, 2013 - How does violence in our schools and communities affect learning? It is a complex question which requires research and theory on topics ranging from classroom management to brain development. This conference was an attempt to bring together a diverse set of scholars who provided unique perspectives on the following broad set of questions:

  1. How do various forms of violence affect learning, behavior, academic achievement, and cognitive development?
  2. How do individuals respond to the threat or fear of violence, and how might the physiological or emotional responses of students affect learning or behavior?
  3. What have we learned from interventions in classrooms or schools and public policies implemented in cities, states, or the nation?
  4. What are the implications of the research on violence and education for our understanding of educational inequality and educational policy?

FEBRUARY 16, 2011 - IHDSC's 4th annual conference was held on February 16, 2011. This invitation-only research conference was organized by the IHDSC Haiti Working Group, an interdisciplinary and interuniversity group of researchers committed to working in Haiti. We focused the discussion on the response to catastrophic events in fragile communities, specifically the earthquake that struck Haiti on January 12, 2010, and how children and families have been impacted. Guided by an interdisciplinary approach, we sought a collaborative effort among scholars of various disciplines to explore how to help best protect the most vulnerable populations by advancing knowledge on how to respond to future natural disasters.

MARCH 24, 2008 - On March 24, 2008, a group of 19 nationally-recognized experts and influential researchers gathered for a working conference at New York University and hosted by the Institute of Human Development and Social Change and Dr. C. Cybele Raver and moderated by Dr. Stephanie Jones. The goal of this specially-selected group, each with strong track records of productivity and collaboration, was to agree upon and to draft "best practice" solutions to the empirical challenge of measuring and analyzing children's "non-cognitive predictors" of their educational success, including over time and across developmental stages.

OCTOBER 5, 2007 - On October 5, 2007 the Institute of Human Development and Social Change was formally launched and introduced to the New York University campus with a "kickoff" conference held at the Kimmel Center of University Life. Featured at the conference were three world-renowned scholars (one economist, one sociologist, one psychologist), each paired with two in-house discussants from NYU departments, across Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Wagner School of Public Service, and Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.

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