Jon Baron, president of the US Coalition for Evidence-Based Policy, has written a blog post for The New York Times on using “what works”. He says, “Scientifically rigorous studies – particularly, the ‘gold standard’ of randomised controlled trials – are a mainstay of medicine, providing conclusive evidence of effectiveness for most major medical advances in recent history.
In social spending, by contrast, such studies have only a toehold. Where they have been used, however, they have demonstrated the same ability to produce important, credible evidence about what works – and illuminated a path to major progress.”
Source: Applying Evidence to Social Programs (2012), Economix