Brown University

Welcome toThe Policy Lab

We’re at the center of Rhode Island’s
infrastructure for evidence-based policymaking.

Let’s learn together.

Why We're Here

The Policy Lab brings together experts from government, universities, and community organizations to collaborate on research tailored to inform decisions about how to improve policies and programs across the state.


We host a variety of events including speaker series and technical workshops to advance the mission of the Lab and share its work with a diverse set of stakeholders. Learn about our upcoming and previous events.

Leading Local: Mayor Marita Garrett

Mayor Marita Garrett

Virtual Event

Join us for a discussion with Mayor Marita Garrett of Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, in the next installation of Leading Local, a speaker series featuring Mayors from across the country, discussing the challenges and opportunities of implementing policy changes at the city level.

Former Mayor of Central Falls and current Senior Advisor at The Policy Lab, James Diossa, will chat with Mayor Garrett about her close collaboration with the Borough's Police Department, the possibility of being annexed by Pittsburgh, what it's like to lead at the local level.

How can data shape your approach to parenting?

Emily Oster

Virtual Event

What's the right kind of school and at what age should a particular kid start? How do you encourage a healthy diet?

Join us for a discusion with Brown professor of economics and mom of two Emily Oster about her latest book, The Family Firm: A Data-Driven Guide to Better Decision Making in the Early School Years

The Family Firm offers a classic business school framework for data-driven parents to think more deliberately about the key issues of the elementary years: school, health, extracurricular activities, and more.


The Making of a Dashboard - Part 4: Refinements and Stakeholder Feedback

In the previous post we discussed general design patterns that put Vue and d3 together. This post will focus on how we improved the UI/UX design of the first prototype (shown above) according to the…

The Making of a Dashboard - Part 3: Rendering the Visualizations

In this post, we will cover the details in creating the data visualizations used in the United Way Rhode Island 211 Dashboard to reveal patterns in 211 calls. The previous post described in detail the…

How do we optimize COVID-19 testing across our communities?

If you can’t tell from our projects page, we’ve been pretty focused on COVID-19 here at The Policy Lab. On December 8, 2020, we held a virtual event to showcase our partnership with policymakers at…

Welcome to Reflections

I’m excited to welcome y’all to Reflections! Before I explain, you need to first notice that our website is growing. You can learn more about our projects in, well, in our new Projects section! There…

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Applied research can be remarkably difficult, as theories often fail to work in practice. We need scientists shoulder-to-shoulder with practitioners in those moments, co-designing fresh ideas and iteratively experimenting to optimize solutions. The Policy Lab is a place and group of people dedicated to this work. Think NASA or Bell Labs, but for public policy.
David Yokum, Director

Our Team

The Policy Lab is a community of researchers, data scientists, project managers, designers, and practitioners dedicated to promoting the use of evidence-based research in policymaking.

Meet the Team
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30,000 Leagues

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