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Research & Studies

Since its inception in the 1970s, the YouthBuild model has been evidence-based: research about the model’s impact clearly demonstrates that it has positive effects on young people. Our program model continues to evolve while maintaining evidence-based standards.

Domestically, since its founding, YouthBuild USA has worked to establish a culture of accountability within the network of YouthBuild programs across the United States. We have developed a robust data management system that provides ongoing information guiding our quality assurance and grant-making practices.  

We have also partnered with external researchers in a variety of targeted studies to increase our knowledge. Studies on YouthBuild USA have been contracted and funded by government agencies, funded by YouthBuild USA with private funds, or conducted by individual researchers and entities with their own funds.

In 2018, MDRC published Laying a Foundation, its final report on the YouthBuild Evaluation. This was a four-year, random assignment study of YouthBuild at 75 sites in the U.S. in partnership with the U.S. Department of Labor.

As part of this evaluation, in 2016, MDRC published its Interim Impact Findings, Building a Future. These studies confirm that the YouthBuild model is effective in increasing the achievement of a high school equivalency credential, employment rates, and earnings.

Learn more about all MDRC evaluations of YouthBuild 

YouthBuild has also been featured in other studies supported by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Learn More 

Globally, since 2010 YouthBuild International and its country-based partners have been the subject of multiple evaluations, assessments, reports, and case studies. These include impact evaluations that have been conducted in three countries and additional reports on YouthBuild impact and innovations in 15 countries.

Read the full report on completed assessments, evaluations and reports conducted on YouthBuild International since 2010.