Monday, January 01, 2007

Wilder Research 2007

We look forward to another productive year in 2007, working in collaboration with many different organizations. - educating, discovering, leading, raising awareness, to improve the lives of individuals, families, and communities.

During 2007:

We have two "Perspectives Breakfasts" set for this year. On February 13, we'll focus on The Caregiver Challenge, a critically important topic now that so many families, friends, and neighbors care for older people for extended periods of time. On April 10, we'll release and discuss some of the new findings from our latest statewide study of Homelessness.

Twin Cities Compass will continue its launch. The Twin Cities region has long been known for offering a high quality of life. But will it remain so? How can we ensure that there will be opportunities for a good education, affordable housing, employment, and access to health care for everyone? How can we ensure we will stand out as a strong, competitive economic region? Twin Cities Compass will give everyone in the Twin Cities a common foundation to understand and act on community issues that affect our region. We invite your ideas and participation in this important initiative.

Visit our web site if you want details, or if you want to register for an event. Watch for other seminars and activities, as we proceed toward 2008, when we hope to develop, in our brand new building, a state-of-the-art facility for learning, discussion, and action on significant public issues.

In the next 12-24 months, we hope to to have "mini-conferences" on child care issues, the achievement gap, homelessness, early childhood mental health, and other topics. We particularly want to understand, raise awareness, and promote productive action regarding disparities in service access and effectiveness among Whites, African-Americans, Latinos, Asians, Africans, and other groups. We have several productions in the works with public television. We have begun planning a unique conference, for early 2008, on the economics of human service programs.

We will continue devoting efforts to the testing and development of "evidence based practices" - especially with a focus on underserved, urban populations including cultural groups whom mainstream research often misses. Interesting studies this year will include adoption innovations for older youth, strengthening the infrastructure of charter schools, and adult day health dementia. Several longitudinal studies - intended to provide a solid, long-term perspective on service effectiveness - will continue and/or offer results during 2007, including the First Steps Initiative, Project Early K, The Power of YOU, Destination 2010, and Cargill Scholars. Our Homeless Management Information System has now reached the point where we can establish some baseline measures to be used over time.

Well, that's just a portion of the anticipated activities. If you have suggestions or questions, please get in touch. If you want to collaborate with us, let us know that too.

Relax, celebrate the new year, watch college football, or do whatever you enjoy today. Then, let's keep on working, exploring, and acting on these issues tomorrow!

Happy New Year!

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