Research Activities

The VR-RRTC on Demand-Side Strategies research activities will produce knowledge regarding state VR agencies’ practices for assessing and meeting employer needs.   The project will consist of three on-site laboratories at ICI’s partnering agencies and three in-house research activities at the ICI.

1. The Alabama Business Intelligence Study: Integration of Labor Market Data and Trends in the ADRS Dashboard. The ADRS will combine a set of research activities over several years to develop a Dashboard incorporating demand side activities and labor market information. This effort will also explore the changes in use of LMI by counselors, the role of business relations consultants in achieving employment outcomes for customers, and the relationship between placement outcomes and the labor market in Alabama.

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2. The Vermont Progressive Employment Model: Investigation of a Dual Customer Approach with Four SVRAs replicates VT DVR’s PE model through a learning collaborative effort. The study will investigate the PE model’s impact on improving employment outcomes through a rigorous impact and process evaluation. The study will assess any differences amongst offices assigned the PE model versus those that do not participate.

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3. The Nebraska Middle Skill Certificate Study: Expanding Training Options to Meet Demand for Middle Skill Workers in Healthcare and Other Industry Sectors establishes and expands partnerships among NVR, community colleges, and employers to meet the industry needs for middle skill jobs. The Plan Do Study Act effort will quickly identify industry needs, develop strategies to meet those needs, deploy those strategies, and then evaluate and incorporate feedback for program improvement.

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4. ICI staff will conduct the National Survey of Demand-Side Strategies as a series of national surveys of VR agencies on current capacities, activities, programs, and characteristics of VR demand-side strategies. Key informant interviews of VR leaders will also probe deeper in VR agencies demand-side practices.

5. Index and Case Studies of Demand-Side Strategies and Dual Customer Practices catalogues formal and informal promising practices related to demand-side strategies applicable to VR. The index will serve as an annotated description of demand-side strategies and the case studies will provide more details on selected practices that have high applicability to VR.

6. VR Outcomes and State Level Labor Needs: Secondary Data Analysis utilizes secondary data from multiple sources, including the Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Census, and ICI survey data to determine predictors of closure patterns by occupation. Recent and past trends in occupational data will be examined in relation to patterns in VR closure to determine if investing in business relations impacts the types of closures by occupation.


The VR-RRTC on Demand-Side Strategies is funded by the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) Grant # H133B120002.