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  • Writer's pictureNathalie Gazzaneo

The Workforce Almanac

About The Almanac

Over 60% of American workers do not hold a 4-year college degree. These almost 70 million American workers without a bachelor’s degree have gained crucial skills through on-the-job training, bootcamps, micro-credentialing programs, community colleges, and many other types of job training programs.

Short-term workforce training programs have been growing in demand. Polling data finds that Americans are increasingly seeking education programs that are relevant for work and suited to their personal needs. Over the past two years, even as community college enrollment has dropped, bootcamps and online training programs are growing in size and market share. Billions in federal, state, and private philanthropic dollars support an expanding set of non-profit, for-profit, and public programs where learners gain work-relevant skills in service of job attainment.

However, system-level data about the US workforce development sector is sparse or incomplete, program-level data is highly fragmented, and replicable drivers of program success remain ill-understood. There is no validated benchmarking information about costs, pedagogical approach, program characteristics, duration, equity, or performance outcomes across the field.

At the Almanac, we are building better, open-access, systemic data, and evidence about the workforce development sector. Our work aims to advance three key public policy goals:

  • To more effectively identify who is served and underserved by workforce training

  • To better understand the types of jobs providers are training for

  • And ultimately, to orient resource allocation towards equity, effective programs, and areas of highest need.

Our Research

Through our research, we seek to advance knowledge about America’s workforce development sector in three primary ways:

  1. We are building an open-access novel dataset that combines distinct data sources covering workforce training, including 15,000+ publicly-funded and non-profit workforce training providers.

  2. We are designing, testing, and executing a survey instrument to collect insights about workforce training. In interviews conducted with training providers, we will collect information about aspects not yet covered by existing data sources, including programs' models, pedagogy, participants served, and if/how program success is currently being tracked.

  3. We are also disseminating our findings in the form of practitioner-focused feedback and publications. For instance, our first white paper offers a descriptive analysis of the publicly-funded Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) eligible training providers.

We hope to build research that serves as a public good for the workforce development ecosystem. We aim to work alongside leaders and practitioners in public, private, philanthropic, and academic organizations to build a new system-level resource that better illuminates the state of the field and ultimately orients the sector toward more equitable and effective outcomes.

The Almanac Team

David Deming | Principal Investigator

Peter Blair | Advisor

Joseph Fuller | Advisor

Robert Schwartz | Advisor

Rachel Lipson | Co-Founder and Former Director

Nathalie Gazzaneo | Associate Director

Alexis Gable | Research and Data Lead

Tessa Forshaw | Research Lead

Arkādijs Zvaigzne | Doctoral Researcher

Jacob Hale | Post-Doctoral Researcher

Jorge Encinas | Doctoral Researcher

Julian Hayes | Doctoral Researcher

Anna Guadarrama | Research Assistant

Dimitrios Asproulis | Research Assistant

Isabel Wu | Research Assistant

Janellie Salcedo | Operations

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