99 episodes

A podcast hosted by Mathematica’s J.B. Wogan that examines what we know about today’s most urgent challenges and how we can make progress in addressing them. Reimagining the way the world gathers and uses data, Mathematica uncovers the evidence that offers our partners the confidence and clarity they need to find out what can be done, how to make it happen, and where to go next.

On the Evidence MATHEMATICA

    • Science
    • 4.8 • 26 Ratings

A podcast hosted by Mathematica’s J.B. Wogan that examines what we know about today’s most urgent challenges and how we can make progress in addressing them. Reimagining the way the world gathers and uses data, Mathematica uncovers the evidence that offers our partners the confidence and clarity they need to find out what can be done, how to make it happen, and where to go next.

    Addressing the Cash Cliff in Safety Net Programs: Lessons from a National Demonstration | Episode 78

    Addressing the Cash Cliff in Safety Net Programs: Lessons from a National Demonstration | Episode 78

    Across many safety net programs, workers with low income and their families face the threat of a sudden and unexpected loss of benefits if their earnings increase too much, sometimes resulting in a net decrease in overall income. Policymakers have long worried that the phenomenon, often described as the cash or benefits cliff, discourages work and reinforces dependence on public assistance. Over the past decade, the Social Security Administration has launched two national demonstrations intended to mitigate this so-called cash cliff effect in the Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) program.

    The latest episode of On the Evidence explores the results of those demonstrations and what they mean for future efforts to address program cliffs in the SSDI program and many other safety net programs. Our guests for this episode are John Jones, David Wittenburg, and Diane Beaver.

    Jones is an economist at the Social Security Administration in the Office of Research, Demonstration, and Employment Support who has overseen several large-scale randomized controlled trials testing potential changes to the SSDI program, including two discussed on this episode: the Promoting Opportunity Demonstration (POD) and the Benefit Offset National Demonstration (BOND).

    Wittenburg is a senior fellow at Mathematica whose research on interventions to promote employment for people with disabilities includes evaluations of POD and BOND.

    Beaver is an advisory services analyst at Mathematica who spent more than a decade at a community nonprofit counseling people on how work and other entitlements would affect their Social Security benefits. In that role, she played a part in implementing POD and has firsthand knowledge of what beneficiaries experience as they navigate the patchwork of program rules that govern the amount of government aid people can receive for housing, food, child care, health care, and other needs as their work status changes.

    Find a full transcript of the episode here: mathematica.org/blogs/why-a-national-demonstration-to-mitigate-the-cash-cliff-in-one-safety-net-program-didnt-increase

    Read the final evaluation report on POD: https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/documents/POD_Final_Evaluation_Report.pdf

    Read the final evaluation report on BOND: https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/documents/BOND%20Deliv%2024e2%20FER%20Vol%201%2020181018.pdf

    Find a summary of lessons learned from several decades of demonstrations by the Social Security Administration to test policy ideas in the Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income programs: https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/demonstrations/lessons.htm

    Learn more about the Ultimate Demonstration referenced at the tail end of the episode: https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/documents/Simplification_Demo_TEP_Final_Report_Final%20Remediated.pdf

    Watch a recorded discussion between Pamela Herd and Sebastian Jilke, professors at the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University, about administrative burden in the Social Security Disability Insurance program: https://www.ssab.gov/announcements/ssab-to-host-experts-on-researching-and-evaluating-equitable-access-to-social-security-programs/

    • 56 min
    Addressing a Primary Care Workforce Crisis | Episode 77

    Addressing a Primary Care Workforce Crisis | Episode 77

    The latest episode of On the Evidence, the Mathematica podcast, explores the primary care workforce crisis, a complex and long-standing problem that was exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Guests Sue Lin, Luci Leykum, Julie Schilz, and Diane Rittenhouse discuss recent research on the nature of the problem as well as evidence-based solutions for strengthening primary care.

    Lin is the deputy office director of the Office of Quality Improvement within the Bureau of Primary Health Care at the Health Resources and Services Administration.

    Leykum is a professor in the Department of Internal Medicine at the Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin who was involved in the creation of a report last year from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine that looked ways to rebuild primary care.

    Schilz is a senior director on the Clinical and Quality Partners team at the Primary Care Development Corporation, which recently published a data brief on investing in primary care to achieve better health and equity in the United States.

    Rittenhouse is a family physician by training and a senior fellow at Mathematica, where she co-authored a report for the California Health Care Foundation that reviewed evidence that could inform health policies aimed at increasing the size and diversity of the primary care workforce in California.

    A full transcript of the episode is available here: mathematica.org/blogs/addressing-a-workforce-crisis-in-primary-care-made-more-severe-by-the-covid-19-pandemic

    Have questions for our podcast guests? Julie Schilz and Diane Rittenhouse will be participating in a Twitter chat co-hosted by Mathematica on June 23 from 2 to 3 p.m. ET on challenges and opportunities for the primary care workforce. Use the hashtag #PrimaryCarePolicyChat to find the chat on Twitter.

    Read the 2021 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine on implementing high quality primary care: https://nap.nationalacademies.org/catalog/25983/implementing-high-quality-primary-care-rebuilding-the-foundation-of-health

    Read Mathematica’s 2021 review of evidence-based strategies for increasing the size and diversity of the primary care workforce in California: https://www.mathematica.org/publications/health-workforce-strategies-for-california-a-review-of-the-evidence

    Read the Primary Care Development Corporation’s May 2022 data brief on investing in primary care to improve health and equity: https://www.pcdc.org/resources/investing-in-primary-care-the-pathway-to-better-health-and-equity-in-the-united-states/

    • 57 min
    The Costs of Untreated Maternal Mental Health Conditions | Episode 76

    The Costs of Untreated Maternal Mental Health Conditions | Episode 76

    In honor of Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week, Mathematica’s podcast, On the Evidence, explores recent research on the societal costs of perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. These disorders—which can include depression, suicidal thoughts, and panic attacks—affect women and birthing people during pregnancy and the postpartum period. Although these disorders are common, they often go undiagnosed and untreated, which can negatively affect the long-term physical, emotional, and developmental health of the birthing parent and child.

    On this episode, Mathematica’s Kara Zivin, The Commonwealth Fund’s Laurie Zephyrin, and Texans Care for Children’s Adriana Kohler discuss the societal costs of maternal mental health conditions and how fresh evidence on those costs informed a policy change to improve the well-being of birthing people and their children in one state.

    Find a full transcript of the episode here: mathematica.org/blogs/the-costs-of-untreated-maternal-mental-health-conditions

    Additional resources:
    Read the 2021 issue brief from Mathematica and the St. David’s Foundation that estimated the societal costs of untreated maternal mental health conditions in Texas: https://mathematica.org/publications/untreated-maternal-mental-health-conditions-in-texas-costs-to-society-and-to-medicaid

    Read the 2021 issue brief from Mathematica and The Commonwealth Fund on the high costs of maternal morbidity: https://www.commonwealthfund.org/publications/issue-briefs/2021/nov/high-costs-maternal-morbidity-need-investment-maternal-health

    Read the 2019 issue brief from Mathematica, the California Health Care Foundation, the ZOMA Foundation, and the Perigee Fund on the societal costs of untreated perinatal mood and anxiety disorders in the United States: https://mathematica.org/publications/societal-costs-of-untreated-perinatal-mood-and-anxiety-disorders-in-the-united-states

    State-level estimates, which Mathematica produced as part of the same research, are also available:
    California: https://mathematica.org/publications/societal-costs-of-untreated-perinatal-mood-and-anxiety-disorders-in-california
    Colorado: https://mathematica.org/publications/societal-costs-of-untreated-perinatal-mood-and-anxiety-disorders-in-colorado
    Washington State: https://mathematica.org/publications/societal-costs-of-untreated-perinatal-mood-and-anxiety-disorders-in-washington

    Read an op-ed in STAT by Zivin, Zephyrin, and Mathematica’s So O’Neil about the toll of complications related to pregnancy and childbirth: https://www.statnews.com/2021/11/23/staggering-toll-pregnancy-childbirth-related-complications/

    Read an op-ed in STAT by Zivin about how her personal experience with suicidal thoughts during pregnancy drove her to conduct research on access to health care for women with mental health and substance use conditions during pregnancy and postpartum: https://www.statnews.com/2021/03/11/meghan-markle-gave-voice-to-the-despair-i-once-felt-during-pregnancy/

    • 53 min
    Human Services Adapted During the Pandemic. What Will Stick? | Episode 75

    Human Services Adapted During the Pandemic. What Will Stick? | Episode 75

    The COVID-19 pandemic prompted human services agencies to rethink how they engage with clients and how they address persistent stress and trauma experienced by their own staff.

    On this episode of On the Evidence, Mathematica’s J.B. Wogan and Diana McCallum discuss how human services agencies have adapted during the pandemic. The episode also includes insights from Kataney Couamin and Andrea Barnum, who work at local agencies providing workforce services, as well as Mathematica’s Jonathan McCay and The Adjacent Possible’s Michelle Derr, who have provided research and evaluation technical assistance to state, tribal, and local agencies that administer the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program.

    Find a full transcript of the episode here: mathematica.org/blogs/pandemic-era-adaptations-in-human-services-could-fill-a-need-even-outside-a-public-health-emergency

    Read the issue brief about supporting mental wellness for TANF program staff and participants: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/report/supporting-mental-wellness-program-staff-and-participants-strategies-temporary

    Read the issue brief about pandemic-era innovations for the future of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families programs: https://www.acf.hhs.gov/opre/report/brief-pandemic-era-innovations-future-temporary-assistance-needy-families-programs

    Read the issue brief about lessons from delivering remote services to job seekers with low incomes during the COVID-19 pandemic: https://pathwaystowork.acf.hhs.gov/pathways_publications/lessons-learned-delivering-remote-services-job-seekers-low-incomes-during

    Read the issue brief about what works to help job seekers with low incomes during economic recessions and recoveries: https://mathematica.org/publications/what-works-during-economic-recessions-and-recoveries-evidence-from-the-pathways-clearinghouse

    Read the issue brief about providing coaching and navigation services virtually to promote economic mobility during the pandemic: https://www.mathematica.org/publications/using-coaching-and-navigation-to-promote-economic-mobility-how-might-programs-provide-these-services

    Read a program snapshot about a nonprofit in South Carolina that used virtual services to continue supporting fathers during the pandemic: https://www.mathematica.org/publications/engaging-fathers-during-the-covid-19-pandemic-and-beyond-program-snapshot

    • 44 min
    Globalizing Evidence-Based Solutions for an Interdependent World | Episode 74

    Globalizing Evidence-Based Solutions for an Interdependent World | Episode 74

    As the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change demonstrate, in an increasingly interdependent world, communities across the globe face shared challenges and need shared solutions. In the latest episode of On the Evidence, Adam Coyne, Chris Boyd, and Respichius Deogratias Mitti discuss the changing role of data and evidence in supporting decisions to improve well-being in a more interconnected world.

    Coyne oversaw international research at Mathematica for most of the past two years and currently serves as the company’s chief growth officer. Boyd is the managing director of EDI Global, a data collection and research organization focused on East Africa that became a subsidiary of Mathematica in 2018. Mitti is a country director for EDI Global who lives and works in Tanzania.

    A transcript of the episode is available at mathematica.org/blogs/the-globalization-of-evidence-informed-decision-making-in-a-more-interdependent-world

    Learn more about Chris Boyd, the managing director of EDI Global, in a recent Q&A for Mathematica’s blog: https://www.mathematica.org/blogs/a-conversation-with-chris-boyd

    Learn more about Mathematica’s international research in more than 50 countries across Africa, Asia, and Latin America: https://mathematica.org/focus-areas/international-research

    Learn more about Mathematica’s ground-breaking work on studying negative income tax experiments in the United States, which has informed pilot projects in other countries as well as in the U.S. to test the impacts of monthly guaranteed income payments: https://mathematica.org/blogs/idea-that-launched-a-policy-research-revolution

    • 44 min
    Ensuring Equity as Wastewater Testing for COVID-19 Matures in the United States | Episode 73

    Ensuring Equity as Wastewater Testing for COVID-19 Matures in the United States | Episode 73

    Sewage has proven to be a valuable source of real-time SARS-CoV-2 data during the COVID-19 pandemic, giving public officials insights into the health of their community without relying on individuals getting tested. But as wastewater monitoring expands, local officials and their research partners are increasingly interested in how wastewater testing might also advance or hinder equity.

    On this episode of On the Evidence, guests Dr. Na’Taki Osborne Jelks, Dr. Otakuye Conroy-Ben, and Aparna Keshaviah discuss the challenges of and opportunities for ensuring an equitable approach to wastewater monitoring and the importance of representation from historic Black neighborhoods, Indigenous communities, and rural communities. Jelks, Conroy-Ben, and Keshaviah are involved with the Wastewater Action Group, a national initiative founded and supported by the Rockefeller Foundation’s Pandemic Prevention Institute that seeks to transform wastewater data into public health action. The group includes five grantees that serve tribal nations and four cities: Atlanta, Houston, Louisville, and Tulsa.

    • Jelks, an assistant professor in environmental and health sciences at Spelman College, is an expert on health equity and community-engaged research approaches for environmental justice in southwest and northwest Atlanta’s African-American neighborhoods.

    • Conroy-Ben is an assistant professor of environmental engineering at Arizona State University, a member of the Oglala Lakota Nation, and the principal investigator for research and community outreach projects funded by the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health to support tribal nations in combatting coronavirus and improving local resources.

    • Keshaviah is an applied biostatistician and principal researcher at Mathematica who is a nationally recognized expert in translational wastewater research, has led wastewater-based research in Montana and North Carolina, and is collaborating with the Rockefeller Foundation to develop robust analytics and tools that boost the capacity of public health personnel to use wastewater data.

    Find a full transcript of the episode here: https://www.mathematica.org/blogs/ensuring-equity-as-wastewater-testing-matures-in-the-united-states

    To learn more about the Wastewater Action Group and the Rockefeller Foundation’s broader wastewater activities, contact Megan Diamond, who leads its international wastewater initiatives: mdiamond@rockfound.org

    Learn more about the Rockefeller Foundation’s efforts to deliver an equitable and sustainable recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic while helping to guard against future pandemics: https://www.rockefellerfoundation.org/covid-19-response/

    Learn more about Mathematica’s work harnessing evidence on wastewater testing, vaccines, rapid antigen tests, and contact tracing to guide the COVID-19 pandemic response: https://mathematica.org/focus-areas/health/covid-19

    • 44 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
26 Ratings

26 Ratings

Kristin's Son ,

Good at economics, not fantasy

If only Kristin was as good at fantasy football as she was at economic and policy.

-Her son who is better at fantasy football

chnet100 ,

The most cogent discussion of CMS transition to APM model

Best explanation of Medicare and Medicaid’s transition from FFS to APM... History, current research and challenges, and vision for the future I have ever had the privilege to hear. Great job to the moderator and each of the panel members!

StuffThatMatters ,

Innovative Practice

On the Evidence provides the listener with important and practical approaches to solving entrenched problems. By challenging traditional approaches, and offering evidence to support innovation, each episode provides a nugget of wisdom that can be replicated in other locations.

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