photo of Lauren Farrell
Lauren Farrell
Deputy Director, Community Engagement Resource Center
Policy Associate
Justice Policy Center
I believe that researchers have a great amount of power and equal responsibility to produce research that is grounded in the knowledge of people experiencing the topic of study. Creating equitable research requires a shift in researchers’ mentality on the values and practices of research, deep questioning of the status quo, and trust and respect for people who want to use research to change the systems they resist.

Lauren Farrell is the deputy director of the Community Engagement Resource Center and a policy associate in the Justice Policy Center at the Urban Institute. Her research focuses on community engagement and participatory methods. She works with young people, community leaders, and people at the intersections of racism, sexism, and ableism to ask what research can do for them. She holds herself accountable to the people who are most affected by research and believes expertise comes from lived experience.

Before joining Urban, Farrell worked with incarcerated people in California and Texas through the Innocence Network. She received her bachelor’s degree in public policy from the Gerald R. Ford School at the University of Michigan.

Research Areas
Crime, justice, and safety
Race and equity
Community engagement
Structural racism in civil society and civic participation
Structural racism in research, data, and technology
Featured Work
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Overhead shot of six disabled people of color at a rooftop deck party. An Indigenous Two-Spirit person with a prosthetic leg smiles directly at the camera and gives a thumbs up while everyone else is engaged in conversation.
Multi-ethnic group of people discussing ideas in a meeting room in the office.
Abdul Kareem Muhammad, CEO and cofounder of Brotha’s Huddl
Davina Carter, resident adviser
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