2021 Research Agenda

Kelsey Martinez, PhD, Research Manager
June 16, 2021

Questions mark in lights
Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash

The UDRC team has been hard at work creating the research agenda for the 2021-2022 state fiscal year. You can find our new research agenda on our website here.

We create a new research agenda each year to guide our research for next year. As new data partners and data are on-boarded to the UDRC system, the types of research questions we can address grow considerably.

The creation of our annual agenda is an iterative process that involves input from the UDRC team and UDRC data partners. The UDRC is required to communicate the research agenda to the Education Interim Committee each July.

This year, we are excited to begin research on a number of topics. Here is a quick overview of the research we will conduct in the next year.

1. Longitudinal Intergenerational Poverty research - 2021
Each year, DWS (UDRC) is mandated by the Intergenerational Welfare Reform Commission to complete longitudinal research on Intergenerational Poverty (IGP). This year, our research will focus on wage and workforce attachment outcomes for individuals impacted by IGP following the COVID-19 recession.
2. Workforce outcomes for Associate's degree recipients
This research will examine the workforce and wage outcomes for Associate's degree recipients in Utah. We will break out Associate's degree recipients by area of study and institution.
3. Workforce outcomes for students earning stackable credentials
Stackable credential recipients earn multiple degrees (B.S., M.S., professional certificates, etc.) in the same field. These degrees are said to "stack" to increase workforce success for recipients. This study will track these stackable credential earners by field into the workforce.
4. Outcomes for disabled K-12 students
This research will follow a cohort of disabled USBE K-12 graduates through high school, post-secondary institutions, and the workforce.
5. Firm size and wage growth for new post-secondary graduates
Research in this field suggests that wage growth is usually related to the firm's size in which students gain employment after graduation. Students employed at larger firms may have more opportunities for promotion and, therefore, wage growth. This research will look at this question for Utah students - following a group of Utah post-secondary graduates into the workforce, their employers, and their wage growth.
6. Time to employment after graduation
Are there specific fields of post-secondary study that ease the job search for new grads? Following a cohort of post-secondary grads into the workforce, this study will look for correlations between fields of study and time to employment after graduation.