Match funded employment RCTs in the housing sector

New opportunities for match funded RCTs in the housing sector

HACT is working with the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) to run a series of Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) with housing associations to test the effectiveness of employment support interventions.

This project follows on from a piece of work that utilises Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs) to generate high quality evidence that housing providers can use in decision-making around investment in tenancy sustainment activities. This next phase focuses specifically upon employment, and is an ideal opportunity for any housing provider interested in generating robust evidence about the effectiveness of their employment interventions.

JRF made funding available to support the delivery of match-funded Randomised Control Trials (RCTs) in the housing sector and there is still funding available. 

Aim: This set of trials will investigate the effectiveness of interventions aimed at addressing barriers to employment as well as employment interventions themselves at getting people into employment. It is anticipated that these trials will create robust evidence about the effectiveness of interventions that will enable the housing sector to gain better insights into those activities that are effective at achieving employment outcomes, and ultimately contribute towards poverty reduction.

To test the effectiveness of employment interventions, we are using Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs), a method viewed as the ‘gold standard’ in terms of measuring effectiveness. This technique’s origins are in medicine, where it is viewed as the most reliable way to test new treatments. In medical trials, the methodology involves randomly allocating a pool of eligible participants either to receive or not to receive the treatment, then comparing the outcomes after a set period of time. In terms of social research, where this method has proven to be equally robust, the medical treatment is replaced by a programme, intervention, or policy of interest.

Participation in the wider project provides opportunities to be part of a peer group and share learning from other housing providers around the UK taking part in the trials. An additional benefit from this project will be improved familiarity with, and confidence is using RCTs in the housing sector.

For more information about this opportunity and how to get involved, please contact our Research Officer, Frances Harkin – frances.harkin@hact.org.uk