Laura R. Peck

Abt Associates
Social & Economic Policy

4550 Montgomery Avenue
Suite 800N
Bethesda, MD
USA
20814
laura_peck@abtassoc.com

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Peck

Laura R. Peck, Ph.D., is a Principal Scientist at Abt Associates and has 20 years of experience evaluating social welfare and employment policies and programs, both in research and academic settings. A policy analyst by training, Dr. Peck specializes in innovative ways to estimate program impacts in experimental and quasi-experimental evaluations, and she applies this to many social safety net programs. Prior to joining Abt in 2011, Dr. Peck had been a tenured Associate Professor at the Arizona State University School of Public Affairs, where she taught public policy analysis, program evaluation, and research methods. At Abt Associates, Dr. Peck is the PI, Co-PI and Director of Analysis for several major national evaluations for the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, Agriculture, and Housing and Urban Development. Co-author of a public policy text-book, Dr. Peck is well-published (and cited) on program evaluation topics in respected journals such as Evaluation Review, the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, the Policy Studies Journal, and the Journal of Poverty. Dr. Peck was elected to the Policy Council (2012-2016 term) for the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management (APPAM); is the founder and chair of the American Evaluation Association’s Topical Interest Group (TIG) on the Design and Analysis of Experiments; and recently completed her term as Associate Editor (2009-2013) for the American Journal of Evaluation. She earned her Ph.D. from the Wagner Graduate School at New York University.

Citation:
Peck, Laura R. (2015). Conditions for Effective Application of Analyses of Symmetrically-Predicted Endogenous Subgroups. American Journal of Evaluation, 36(4): 532-546.
DOI: 10.1177/1098214015600514
Citation:
Lucio, Joanna, Anna Jefferson & Laura R. Peck. (2015). Dreaming the Impossible Dream: Low-income Families and Their Hopes for the Future. Journal of Poverty.
DOI: 10.1080/10875549.2015.1094772
Citation:
Tipton, Elizabeth & Laura R. Peck. (2016). A Design-based Approach to Improve External Validity in Welfare Policy Evaluation. Evaluation Review.
DOI: 10.1177/0193841X16655656
Citation:
Bell, Stephen H. & Laura R. Peck. (2016). On the Feasibility of Extending Social Experiments to Wider Applications. MultiDisciplinary Journal of Evaluation, 12(27): 93-112.
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. & Naomi Goldstein. (2016). Social Experiments in Practice: Introduction, Framing, and Context. New Directions for Evaluation, 152: 9-17.
DOI: 10.1002/ev.20215
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. (2016). On the “How” of Social Experiments: Analytic Strategies for Getting Inside the Black Box. New Directions for Evaluation, 152: 85-96.
DOI: 10.1002/ev.20211
Citation:
Bell, Stephen H., & Laura R. Peck. (2016). On the “How” of Social Experiments: Experimental Designs for Getting Inside the Black Box. New Directions for Evaluation, 152: 97-107.
DOI: 10.1002/ev.20210
Citation:
Harvill, Eleanor L., Laura R. Peck & Stephen H. Bell. 2013. "On Overfitting in Analysis of Symmetrically Predicted Endogenous Subgroups from Randomized Experimental Samples: Part Three of a Method Note in Three Parts." American Journal of Evaluation 34 (4):545-556.
DOI: 10.1177/1098214013503201
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. & Chao Guo. 2014. "How Does Welfare Use Affect Charitable Activity? A Tale of Two Methods." Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly.
Abstract: How does receiving public assistance affect an individual’s charitable giving and volunteering? Using the 1994 to 2005 Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) and 2005 Center on Philanthropy Panel Study (COPPS) data, we use a series of comparison group and propensity score matching approaches to overcome sticky issues of selection bias and to explore this question. We find that neither current public assistance receipt nor the amount of public assistance income has any effect on an individual’s charitable contributions of time and money. Cumulative past public assistance appears to suppress charitable giving but not volunteerism.
URL: http://nvs.sagepub.com/content/early/2014/03/21/0899764014527642.abstract
DOI: 10.1177/0899764014527642
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. 2015. "Using Impact Evaluation Tools to Unpack the Black Box and Learn What Works." Journal of MultiDisciplinary Evaluation 11(24): 54-67.
Abstract: Researchers and policy makers are increasingly dissatisfied with the “average treatment effect.” Not only are they interested in learning about the overall causal effects of policy interventions, but they want to know what specifically it is about the intervention that is responsible for any observed effects. This discusses Peck's (2003) approach to creating symmetrically-predicted subgroups for analyzing endogenous features of experimentally evaluated interventions and then it identifies several possible extensions that might help evaluators better understand complex interventions. It aims to enrich evaluation methodologists’ toolbox, to improve our ability to analyze “what works” in addressing important questions for policy and program practice.
URL: http://journals.sfu.ca/jmde/index.php/jmde_1/article/view/415
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. & Chao Guo. 2014. How Does Welfare Use Affect Charitable Activity? A Tale of Two Methods. Nonprofit and Voluntary Sector Quarterly.
DOI: 10.1177/0899764014527642
Citation:
Moulton, Shawn, Laura R. Peck, & Keri-Nicole Dillman. 2014. "Moving to Opportunity’s Impact on Health and Well-being Among High Dosage Participants." Housing Policy Debate 24 (2):415-446.
DOI: 10.1080/10511482.2013.875051
Citation:
Bell, Stephen H. & Laura R. Peck. 2013. "Using Symmetric Predication of Endogenous Subgroups for Causal Inferences about Program Effects under Robust Assumptions: Part Two of a Method Note in Three Parts." American Journal of Evaluation 34 (3):413-426.
DOI: 10.1177/1098214013489338
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. 2013. "On Analysis of Symmetrically-Predicted Endogenous Subgroups: Part One of a Method Note in Three Parts." American Journal of Evaluation 34 (2):225-236.
DOI: 10.1177/1098214013481666
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. 2015. "Conditions for Effective Application of Analyses of Symmetrically-Predicted Endogenous Subgroups." American Journal of Evaluation.
Abstract: Several analytic strategies exist for opening up the “black box” to reveal more about what drives policy and program impacts. This article focuses on one of these strategies: the Analysis of Symmetrically-Predicted Endogenous Subgroups (ASPES). ASPES uses exogenous baseline data to identify endogenously-defined subgroups, keeping the analysis of some postrandomization choice, event, or milestone grounded in the strength of experimental design. Building on lessons from prior applications of ASPES and also adding some new analyses, this article focuses on four specific practical considerations: first-stage prediction success, assumption credibility, data availability, and sample size. Discussion implies the optimal conditions for effective application of ASPES and points to future research that can enhance the overall tool kit of “what works” analyses.
URL: http://aje.sagepub.com/content/early/2015/09/09/1098214015600514.abstract
DOI: 10.1177/1098214015600514
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. 2003. "Subgroup Analysis in Social Experiments: Measuring Program Impacts Based on Post Treatment Choice." American Journal of Evaluation 24 (2): 157 187.
Citation:
Peck, Laura R., and Ronald J. Scott, Jr. 2005. "Can Welfare Case Management Increase Employment? Evidence from a Pilot Program Evaluation." Policy Studies Journal 33 (4): 509-533.
Citation:
Peck, Laura R. 2007. "What are the Effects of Welfare Sanction Policies? Or, Using Propensity Scores as a Subgroup Indicator to Learn More from Social Experiments." American Journal of Evaluation 28 (3): 256-274.

Substantive Focus:
Social Policy PRIMARY

Theoretical Focus:
Policy Analysis and Evaluation PRIMARY

Keywords

PROGRAM EVALUATION RESEARCH METHODOLOGY SOCIAL POLICY