Data & Evaluation Partnerships

Community-Engaged Data & Evaluation Collaborative

The Community-Engaged Data & Evaluation Collaborative (CEDEC) leverages Brown University’s resources to address data, evaluation and research priorities identified and valued by nonprofit and public agencies in Rhode Island. 


CEDEC was born out of community partner interest. When meeting with Swearer Center staff, local community partners shared that they wished to build capacity related to data management and assessment and evaluation. Many community partner organizations already collect data and recognize the importance of evaluating their programs and long-term impact; however, they often lack staff time or technical capacity to maximize their use of data. Undertaking data and evaluation projects with community partners can advance those partners’ goals while providing Brown students with meaningful, real-world learning experiences, making collaboration mutually beneficial.

Collaboration Across the University

While the Swearer Center is CEDEC’s administrative home, CEDEC brings together partners from across the university, including the Annenberg Institute for School Reform, the Center for Library Exploration and Research (CLEAR) at the Brown University Library, the Data Science Institutethe School of Professional Studiesthe School of Public Health, and the Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs. Each institute or school offers distinctive curricular and co-curricular resources. By working together, we aim to address community partners’ priorities more effectively, engaging people across academic disciplines while building on existing partnerships and cultivating new ones. Additional campus partners are welcome; if interested, please email [email protected].

Ways to Engage

Depending on community partners’ interests, campus partners in CEDEC can:

  • Serve as thought partners, informing the development of data and evaluation projects or systems;
  • Support data collection, e.g., through survey design, focus groups or interviews, or review of broader data in the field;
  • Clean, organize, and analyze existing data;
  • Contribute to communicating data or evaluation results, e.g., through visualizations, dashboards, or narratives; and
  • Provide manuals, training or other resources to increase organizations’ internal capacity to build on these systems and projects. 

Engagement may happen individually or in groups. Even if specific students may engage for just one summer or semester, CEDEC aims to foster longer-term relationships and can match different resources to different aspects of a project over time.

Getting Involved

Are you a community partner interested in support around a data or evaluation project? We encourage you either to fill out this Community Partnership Interest Form or to email [email protected] to schedule a time to talk. Based on your goals, project idea and timeline, we can help determine which CEDEC resource(s) might be best able to work with you.

Are you a student interested in working on a community-identified data or evaluation project? We would be happy to connect you with one of our institutional partners or a community partner with an open project. Please email [email protected] with initial information on your skills and goals.

Are you a faculty or staff member interested in engaging students with partners’ projects – or already working on a collaborative project yourself? We want to hear from you. Please share your experience or interests by either filling out this Campus Partnership Interest Form or emailing [email protected].


Stay tuned for updates as CEDEC continues to grow. If you have questions about CEDEC or would like to be connected to the team, please email [email protected].