Leader in evidence assessment.


You have questions. DSG gets the answers.

In keeping with our mission of Science in the Service of People, the dozens of scientists and support staff who make up DSG’s Research and Evaluation Division help clients and consumers alike make evidence-based decisions about behavioral health, justice, and education policies, programs, practices, and interventions.

Indeed, DSG is a leader in evidence assessment, having worked for decades to identify the best of science through systematic, rigorous analysis and share that knowledge with the public.

Primary Research

DSG engages in original quantitative, qualitative, and mixed-methods research to shed light on poorly understood phenomena. Our scientists design, conduct, and analyze data from

  • Surveys
  • Pilot studies
  • Impact evaluations
  • Outcome evaluations
  • Process evaluations
  • Case studies
  • Focus groups
  • Structured interviews
  • Site visits
  • Ethnographic mapping
  • Participant observations
  • Randomized controlled trials
  • Quasi-experimental research
Secondary Research

Our scientists are also adept at conducting systematic research reviews and meta-analyses, as well as secondary data analysis of small-to-large datasets, including

  • U.S. Census Data
  • National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System
  • Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System
  • Uniform Crime Reports
  • National Survey on Drug Use and Health
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Wide-ranging Online Data for Epidemiologic Research
  • Buprenorphine Waiver Notification System
  • Treatment Episode Data Set
  • Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System
  • Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System
  • National Health Interview Survey

We conduct surveys, program evaluations, studies, field research, focus groups, and in-person interviewing for program outcome evaluations, public opinion research, needs assessments, and market research on key health, social service, and juvenile and criminal justice issues.

Our Division

DSG has delivered a wide range of research and evaluation services to diverse federal, state, and local initiatives addressing issues in health, social services, juvenile justice, education, and related fields. We offer the following research services:

  • Evidence-based repositories
  • Survey design and planning
  • Survey administration using various data collection methods
  • Sampling and survey development
  • Database administration
  • Analyses of quantitative and qualitative data
  • Pretests and pilot studies
  • Impact evaluations
  • Process evaluations
  • Expert Staff

DSG research staff and consultants are highly experienced in both quantitative and qualitative research methods, including survey design, instrument development, telephone and in-person interviewing, survey operations, site visits, and analysis. We do not use “cookie cutter” methodologies. Rather, we tailor our approach to clients’ needs, seeking to include the combination of quantitative and qualitative methods that will best capture the full range of needed information, whether the task at hand is a formative study of a new program, an accountability study for stakeholders, a process study assessing program implementation, a study of program coverage (e.g., program targets, bias, and over- or under-inclusion), or program monitoring.

Survey Methodology

Research studies have entailed the design of surveys to assess attitudinal, behavioral, and opinion changes (including random and stratified sampling plans on national and local levels); development of data collection instruments for in-person and telephone interviews as well as secondary data analysis; qualitative research strategies (including interviewing, ethnographic mapping, focus groups, and participant observation); site-visit protocols; development of interviewer training manuals and programs; data collection; database development; data analysis; and production of final reports.

To ensure methods are cost-effective and appropriate, each step of the research process is monitored closely, from the preliminary analyses and specification of hypotheses to the selection of the type of study and study design, and the identification of controls and outcome measures.

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