As directed by the conferees, ASPE funded the National Academy of Sciences (NAS) in 1998 to conduct a Panel Study to evaluate the design of current, proposed and future studies of the effects of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA) of 1996 and make recommendations on further research. Through a combination of workshops, quarterly panel meetings and written reports, the NASappointed panel of experts continues to: (1) review our existing research efforts on the effects of welfare reform; (2) examine the appropriate data sources, research designs and statistical methods for analyzing welfare reform outcomes; and (3) identify research gaps and data needs for the continued study of welfare reform.
Funding of the National Academy of Sciences Expert Panel will continue in 1999 as part of ASPE’s overall research strategy for studying welfare outcomes. Over the course of this 30-month Panel Study, the Academy will continue to conduct workshops and will publish both an Interim Report and a Final Report. The Interim Report, due this summer, will contain a summary of the Panel’s first workshop as well as the Panel’s early recommendations on the Department’s welfare reform research plan. The Final Report will document the Panel’s comprehensive list of final recommendations on welfare outcomes research.