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  • Program Evaluation

    Urban has deep expertise in providing technical guidance, testing promising new program designs, determining program and service effectiveness, and measuring returns on investment to help public agencies and nonprofits operate more effectively. Urban experts also help implement evaluations by designing indicators and data collection strategies that support continuous learning. 

    Contact us today to learn how the range of Urban’s evaluations—from measuring a single organization’s performance to assessing multiple programs over several years—can promote a more effective use of resources. 


    Denver Housing Program Evaluation Inspires Increased Investment

    Malcolm experienced debilitating hip pain while living on the streets of Denver.

    The Changemakers

    The City and County of Denver

    The Challenge

    City and county leaders sought to assess the effects of a social impact bond initiative that aimed to support residents struggling with chronic homelessness and reduce the number of arrests, jail stays, and emergency room visits they experience.

    The Work

    Urban helped design and evaluate Denver’s Supportive Housing Social Impact Bond (SIB) Initiative. One of the first such programs in the country, the Denver SIB combined a permanent housing subsidy with intensive services, such as connections to mental health counseling, to help people stay housed. It also used a “Housing First” approach.

    Urban tracked implementation of the Denver SIB and evaluated its effects over five years using a randomized controlled trial—the gold standard for determining a program’s impact. The Denver SIB study is one of the most rigorous evaluations of how supportive housing affects people’s interactions with the criminal legal system and emergency health services.

    The Impact

    Urban’s evaluation findings inspired Denver to establish a new line item in the city budget to continue the SIB program. And in 2022, our work led to a Treasury Department grant supporting a major expansion of supportive housing for people at the intersection of homelessness, the criminal legal system, and emergency health care in Denver. Since its inception, this work has created at least 450 supportive housing units for people experiencing chronic homelessness in Denver County.

    Collaborate with Urban
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