- < Back to Principal Associates & Scientists

Karen Gardiner

Principal Associate, Social & Economic Policy

Karen Gardiner Karen Gardiner
Karen Gardiner has more than 20 years of research and policy-related experience on a wide range of programs and policies related to low-income individuals, including employment and training programs, welfare, and child support enforcement. 

Gardiner currently serves as the Project Director for the Innovative Strategies for Increasing Self-Sufficiency (ISIS) project, a 10-year impact study of nine career pathways programs, funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). She is also project director of the evaluation of Round 4 of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College Career Training Grants Program, a U.S. Department of Labor impact and implementation study of TAACCCT grantees.

Gardner directs Abt’s work on the Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration Evaluation project, under subcontract to MDRC. In addition to overall project management, Ms. Gardiner’s technical work on these studies includes site recruitment, evaluation design, implementation research, and disseminating results through publications and presentations to a variety of audiences.

Gardner holds a M.P.P. from the University of Chicago and a B.A. from the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Switch to single-page view (no tabs)

Expertise

  • Welfare and low-income assistance/family support
  • Workforce development
  • Child support enforcement
  • Policy assessment/ analysis
  • Evaluation design and data collection (including survey design and management)
  • Low-income individuals, including Hispanic populations, ex-offenders, low-skilled workers, and people with disabilities




Key Projects

  • Innovative Strategies for Improving Self-Sufficiency (ISIS), HHS
  • Evaluation of Round 4 of the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College Career Training Grants Program, Department of Labor
  • Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration Evaluation, MDRC
  • Job Search Assistance Evaluation, HHS
  • H1-B Technical Skills Training Evaluation, Department of Labor




Honors/Awards

  • JHP, Inc. Board of Directors




Selected Publications/Presentations

  • Gardiner, K., Fishman, M., Ragan, M. and T. Gais, Local Implementation of TANF in Five Sites: Changes Related to the Deficit Reduction Act, prepared for the Administration for Children and Families Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, March 2008.
  • Gardiner, K. Enhancing Child Support Enforcement Efforts: Summary of Data Warehouse Efforts in Nine States. Child Support Quarterly. Summer 2007.
  • Gardiner, K., Fishman, M., Gais, T., and M. Ragan. Local Implementation of TANF in Five Sites, prepared for the Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation, Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, January 2007.
  • Gardiner, K., Fishman, M., Glosser, A., and J. Tapogna. Study of the Implementation of the Performance-Based Incentive System: Final Report, prepared for the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Child Support Enforcement, January 2004.
  • Gardiner, K., Tapogna, J., and M. Fishman. Administrative and Judicial Processes for Establishment Child Support Orders, prepared for the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Child Support Enforcement, June 2002.
SELECTED PRESENTATIONS
  • “The Innovative Strategies for Increasing Self-Sufficiency (ISIS) Evaluation: An Assessment of Nine Promising Career Pathways Programs.” American Public Human Services Association Policy Forum. Crystal City, VA. June 12, 2013.
  • “Using Random Assignment to Learn What Works: Example from an ISIS Site.” National Association for Welfare Research and Evaluation. Baltimore, MD. August 22, 2012.