What We're Learning

We are committed to sharing the results of our grantmaking and the lessons we learn as we carry out our work. We believe it is important to evaluate and reflect regularly, study the findings of research and reports generated with our support, and communicate the results with those in the field and with the public.Read more about our learning philosophy

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Evaluations of the Models for Change Initiative and the National Campaign to Reform State Juvenile Justice Systems

This evaluation reveals insight on two initiatives that influenced juvenile justice policies and outcomes for youth and public safety throughout the country. More

How Policymakers Prioritize Evidence-Based Programs

An issue brief from the Pew-MacArthur Results First Initiative illustrates how policymakers are using legislation to prioritize evidence-based decision-making when it comes to what programs receive funding. More

College Students Offer Policy Ideas

The Roosevelt Institute, recipient of the MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions, has released 10 Ideas, a journal that elevates top student-generated policy proposals from across the country. More

Survey Finds 62 Percent Global Decline in New Coal Plants

The Sierra Club’s third annual survey of the coal plant pipeline, Boom and Bust 2017, finds a 62 percent drop in new coal plant construction starts globally, including an 85 percent decline in new Chinese coal plant permits. More

Reframing Public Defense

As part of the Safety and Justice Challenge, the National Legal Aid & Defender Association developed a communications toolkit to help defenders better articulate the role the public defender can play in an effective criminal justice system. More

How Silicon Valley Reengineered Journalism

Social media platforms and technology companies are having a greater effect on American journalism than the shift from print to digital, according to a MacArthur-supported report by the Tow Center For Digital Journalism. More

Ranking Tech Companies on Digital Rights

The majority of telecommunications, internet, and mobile companies does not disclose sufficient information to their users about policies and practices affecting freedom of expression and privacy, according to the 2017 Ranking Digital Rights Corporate Accountability Index. More

The Cost of Economic and Racial Segregation in Chicago

Economic and racial segregation cost the Chicago region billions of dollars each year, according to a report by the Metropolitan Planning Council and the Urban Institute with support from MacArthur and the Chicago Community Trust. More

Neuroscience Could Reveal Criminal Intent

Researchers at Vanderbilt, Virginia Tech, and Yale universities have discovered that brain scans can identify differences between criminal intent and reckless behavior, in a study supported by the MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Law and Neuroscience. More

Assessing Perceptions of Local Justice Systems

A nationwide poll on perceptions of jails and local criminal justice systems reveals that the majority of Americans believe the role of jails should not be to punish, and shows broad support for treatment and rehabilitation. More