This year’s conference theme, "Strength in Numbers," is a celebration of a decade of data-informed progress from across our network and an opportunity to discuss our future direction. Join us for our 10th-anniversary celebration. We will look back at the evidence-informed progress we’ve made as a sector but also look forward to the pressing issues of the day. This year the event will take place at the Charles Hotel in Cambridge, MA from May 20–22, 2019. 

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Wednesday, May 22 • 10:15am - 11:30am
Strength in Failure: A candid conversation about research & analysis that never saw the light of day Session is full
Limited Capacity full
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Join SDP Alumni for a critical conversations session about studies, analyses, and experiments that failed to create usable data, were never conducted, were never presented due to organizational or political pressure, or evolved into a completely different study. Rarely do we talk candidly about all the times we failed, and how we overcame barriers to better use data to inform policy and practice. At SDP’s 10th Anniversary, there is no better time to bring forward some of these "failures" and talk about how they resulted in new learnings, generated new practices, and spurred new research. Attendees will leave the session with examples of “failures” across five agencies that resulted in new research or policies that moved the conversation forward. The presenters will share their experiences of how they created action from failure, and how it catalyzed later success. This discussion will highlight strategies for advancing rigorous data analysis to improve the quality of decision-making in educational agencies. This session seeks to leave the attendee with a greater understanding of how the research process unfolds, and how unexpected roadblocks can result in stronger results down the line. The audience will be given time to reflect on their own challenges, brainstorm strategies to work around barriers, and develop next steps for addressing similar challenges in their agencies, in addition to having ample time to ask and answer questions.

avatar for Tom Hay

Tom Hay

Academy Director, ConsenSys
I'm Director of ConsenSys Academy. We build educational products to teach about the blockchain. Former Director of Data Strategy @ Uplift Education, former Associate @ Booz Allen Hamilton. SDP Alumni - Cohort 6.
avatar for Carrie Conaway

Carrie Conaway

Chief Strategy and Research Officer, MA Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education
avatar for Cara Jackson

Cara Jackson

Associate Partner, Bellwether Education Partners
Cara is an associate partner with Bellwether Education Partners, focusing on issues related to evaluation and planning, research design, survey research, and quantitative data analysis. She provides technical assistance and supports capacity building related to program evaluation... Read More →
avatar for Matt Lenard

Matt Lenard

Graduate Student, Harvard Graduate School of Education
Matt Lenard is a Ph.D. student in Education Policy and Program Evaluation at Harvard University. His primary research interests involve identifying and evaluating interventions that improve student achievement and teacher quality—all with an eye toward eliminating disparities.
avatar for Matt Linick

Matt Linick

Sr. Researcher, AIR

Wednesday May 22, 2019 10:15am - 11:30am EDT
Kennedy A, First Floor Charles Hotel (1 Bennett St, Cambridge, MA, USA)