E2C Hub Research Advisory Committee

Learn about the E2C Hub's Research Advisory Committee, a forum for researchers and analysts who work with MA education data to share their views and help elevate the priorities and needs of external users.

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The Research Advisory Committee (RAC) is made up of members of the Massachusetts research and advocacy communities who bring a diversity of expertise, backgrounds, and ideas to our work advancing equitable student outcomes and promoting the state's use of data and research. Members of the RAC help identify and provide input on the most common needs and requests of these communities. With permission from the data owners, the RAC may also have opportunities to see new data reports and other materials before publication and offer feedback and suggestions for consideration.   

The RAC is not a decision-making entity. It provides input and feedback and makes recommendations to the E2C Hub’s Cross-Agency Leadership Group. 


  1. Identify top needs or desired improvements for Massachusetts education data systems among external researchers and data analysts.  

  2. Provide input and feedback on specific education or workforce data/research projects.   

  3. Advise on user-friendly design of dashboards and data tools.

Potential Areas of Focus

The role of the RAC is to offer the perspective of the research community to help inform the work of the E2C Hub. Members may have opportunities to offer input on:  

  • Research questions in priority areas – Identifying potential research questions related to agency priority areas that could be addressed by the E2C Hub team via longitudinal or cross-agency data (e.g., wage data, ECIDS).  

  • Public datasets – Recommending aggregated datasets that researchers would like to see available through the Hub and providing feedback on the structure of existing datasets.  

  • Research briefs and data stories – Recommending areas of published research that could help inform policy priorities, and providing feedback on research briefs or data stories that highlight evidence for policymaking or exemplar success stories.  

  • Data quality and completeness – Highlighting gaps or issues with state data, contributing to investigations, and recommending solutions.  

  • Data/research request processes – Providing feedback on existing process and planned new process; highlighting strengths from other states’ processes or policies related to research.  

  • User experience testing – Advising on the design of new Hub tools (e.g., dashboards, research library, website) and helping recruit users for testing. 


Members are selected to represent the diverse Massachusetts research communities in terms of the following aspects: 

  • Type of research (academic, advocacy-oriented, policy-oriented, etc.)  

  • Sociocultural background  

  • Race/ethnicity  

  • Years of experience  

Members initially commit to a one-year term. Membership to the RAC is voluntary and unpaid.  

Current members 

  • Abigail Anderson, Lowell Public Schools  
  • Alexander K. Mayer, MDRC  
  • Anne Douglass, Institute for Early Education Leadership and Innovation, UMass Boston  
  • Anne McKenzie, Hadley Public Schools 
  • Ashley White, Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation (MTF)  
  • Brian Gill, Mathematica  
  • Cheryl Ching, UMass Boston  
  • Christina Weiland, University of Michigan  
  • Christopher Cleveland, Harvard University  
  • Dan Goldhaber, CALDER & the University of Washington 
  • Hannah Hermanson, ForHealth Consulting at UMass Chan Medical School  
  • Jeremiah Johnson, University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute (UMDI) 
  • Kate Keller, EdVestors  
  • Mark Melnik, University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute (UMDI)  
  • Monnica Chan, UMass Boston  
  • Penny Hasseli, MassHire Metro North Workforce Board  
  • Pinghui Wu, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston  
  • Sarah Cohodes, University of Michigan  
  • Sean Precious, Brockton Public Schools  
  • Shanette Porter, University of Chicago  
  • Shaun M. Dougherty, Boston College 
  • Vernée Wilkinson, SchoolFacts Boston 
  • Wil Del Pilar, The Education Trust 
  • Yoonsook Ha, Boston University 


Meetings are held virtually and/or in person every four months (3x per year). RAC meetings are open to the public. Find information about upcoming or past meetings here.  

Avoiding Conflicts of Interest

We prioritize minimizing conflicts of interest so that members of the RAC will still be eligible to apply for agency research projects put out to bid. We will take the following precautions:  

  • Members of the RAC will not have access to confidential agency information. All RAC meetings will be publicly announced with agendas, and open to anyone who registers. Meeting slides and minutes will be posted after meetings.  

  • The RAC will not advise on topics where agencies believe there is likely to be a bid opportunity in the near future.  

  • The RAC will not be involved in reviewing submitted research proposals or have influence over the state’s process for reviewing contracted research.  

  • Agency staff members will pause RAC discussion and move to the next agenda item if the discussion begins to touch on future procurements.  

  • RAC members may decide to recuse themselves from a meeting or portion of a meeting out of an abundance of caution, if they anticipate bidding on related work in the future.  

  • RAC members should reach out to the State Ethics Commission if they have any questions.

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