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National Supported Work Demonstration
Last registered on February 14, 2017

Pre-Trial

Trial Information
General Information
Title
National Supported Work Demonstration
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0001975
Initial registration date
February 14, 2017
Last updated
February 14, 2017 2:56 PM EST
Location(s)
Region
Primary Investigator
Affiliation
University of Pennsylvania
Other Primary Investigator(s)
PI Affiliation
Formerly of Mathematica Policy Research
PI Affiliation
Formerly of Mathematica Policy Research
PI Affiliation
MDRC (formerly Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation)
PI Affiliation
MDRC (formerly Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation)
Additional Trial Information
Status
Completed
Start date
1975-04-01
End date
1979-03-30
Secondary IDs
Abstract
The first large random assignment study of a multisite employment program, Supported Work offered a year of carefully structured, paid work to four groups of hard-to-employ people: former prisoners, former addicts, young school dropouts, and single mothers who were long-term recipients of welfare. The evaluation found that the program significantly increased the post-program employment of welfare recipients and reduced their receipt of cash assistance but did not have consistent impacts for the other three groups.
Registration Citation
Citation
Hollister, Robinson et al. 2017. "National Supported Work Demonstration." AEA RCT Registry. February 14. https://www.socialscienceregistry.org/trials/1975/history/14028
Experimental Details
Interventions
Intervention(s)
12 or 18 months of structured, paid work experience
Intervention Start Date
1975-04-01
Intervention End Date
1977-07-31
Primary Outcomes
Primary Outcomes (end points)
Employment, hours worked, earnings, wage rates, welfare receipt and payments, income and poverty, drug use, criminal activities, child care
Primary Outcomes (explanation)
Secondary Outcomes
Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)
Experimental Design
Experimental Design
Random assignment of 6,616 eligible program applicants to participant (3,214) or control (3,402) groups. In-person interviews conducted at time of random assignment and at 9-month intervals thereafter for up to 36 months. Data validated by comparison with Social Security, welfare, and arrest records.
Experimental Design Details
Randomization Method
Randomization done by computer under the control of centrally located personnel from Mathematica Policy Research.
Randomization Unit
individual
Was the treatment clustered?
No
Experiment Characteristics
Sample size: planned number of clusters
n/a
Sample size: planned number of observations
6,616 individuals
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
3,214 individuals in participant group, 3,402 individuals in control group
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB
INSTITUTIONAL REVIEW BOARDS (IRBs)
IRB Name
IRB Approval Date
IRB Approval Number
Post-Trial
Post Trial Information
Study Withdrawal
Intervention
Is the intervention completed?
Yes
Intervention Completion Date
July 31, 1977, 12:00 AM +00:00
Is data collection complete?
Yes
Data Collection Completion Date
March 30, 1979, 12:00 AM +00:00
Final Sample Size: Number of Clusters (Unit of Randomization)
Was attrition correlated with treatment status?
No
Final Sample Size: Total Number of Observations
6,616 individuals randomly assigned. Analysis sample varied by length of follow-up and survey completion rates.
Final Sample Size (or Number of Clusters) by Treatment Arms
Data Publication
Data Publication
Is public data available?
Yes
Program Files
Program Files
No
Reports and Papers
Preliminary Reports
Relevant Papers
Abstract
The National Supported Work Demonstration, a program at 15 sites around the country, was designed to test whether and to what extent 12 to 18 months of employment in a supportive but performance-oriented environment would equip hard-to-employ people to get and hold normal, unsubsidized jobs. The program concentrated on women who had been receiving Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) for many years, ex-addicts, ex-offenders, and young school dropouts, often with criminal records or histories of delinquency. The evaluation found that the program proved effective in enhancing the employability and earnings of long-term AFDC recipients, particularly those with the least prior work experience, and in reducing their dependence on welfare payments. It also had an impact on a significant segment of the ex-addict population, who did better in getting jobs, earned more, and were less likely to commit crimes than those who were not in the program. The program had a marginal impact on ex-offenders, and yielded no long-term positive results for the youth group.
Citation
MDRC Board of Directors. 1980. Summary and Findings of the National Supported Work Demonstration. Cambridge, MA: Ballinger.