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Grant Thornton Principal Robert Shea appointed to bipartisan federal commission on evidence-based policymaking

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell names former OMB official to commission examining how data can improve government effectiveness

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"Through this commission, the government has an important opportunity to improve evidence-building and use that information to better serve all Americans."
ALEXANDRIA, VA --Grant Thornton LLP today announced that Public Sector Principal Robert J. Shea, a former senior official at the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB), has been appointed to serve on a bipartisan federal commission that seeks to better use existing data to strengthen government programs and policymaking.

“Proof of program success – or lack thereof – must be a key element of how the government justifies future policymaking,” Shea said. “Through this commission, the government has an important opportunity to improve evidence-building and use that information to better serve all Americans.”

Shea, former associate director for Administration and Government Performance at OMB, was appointed to the commission by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. At Grant Thornton Public Sector, Shea is a member of the organizational improvement team and has conducted performance management engagements with the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Homeland Security and Veterans Affairs, as well as the National Endowment for the Arts. Shea previously served as Counsel to the U.S. Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs.

The 15-member commission was established by the Evidence-Based Policymaking Commission Act, which was jointly sponsored by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and signed into law by President Barack Obama in March 2016. Commission members were appointed by the president, the Speaker of the House, the House Minority Leader, the Senate Majority Leader, and the Senate Minority Leader. Members include academic researchers, data experts, program administrators and privacy experts.

The commission’s mission is to develop a strategy for increasing the availability and use of data in order to build evidence about government programs, while protecting privacy and confidentiality. Committee members will study how data, research and evaluation are currently used to build evidence and how to strengthen the government’s evidence-building efforts. The commission will issue its findings and report to the president and Congress in September 2017.

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