Learning what works to support equitable delivery of the American Rescue Plan


The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (ARP) was designed to address immediate needs related to the pandemic, with a specific focus on addressing historically disparate outcomes across race, class, and geography that were further exacerbated by the pandemic. To guide the federal government’s exploration of questions about equitable recovery, the White House released an ARP Equity Learning Agenda, as part of the Advancing Equity Through the ARP report. The Equity Learning Agenda is designed to provide a framework for ensuring the federal government builds evidence about what works and what doesn’t, to deliver an equitable recovery both now and in the future.

In support of the Equity Learning Agenda and agency evaluation efforts, OES’s ARP Evaluation Portfolio has two core elements: a national evaluation conducted by a third-party contract, and a portfolio of evaluations conducted by OES, in partnership with agencies, on ARP-funded programs with equity goals.

National Evaluation

The goal of the national evaluation is to look systematically across a selected subset of ARP programs, and provide an integrated account of whether, how, and to what extent their implementation served to achieve their intended outcomes, particularly with respect to advancing equity. The multi-year evaluation will be conducted by the American Institutes for Research (AIR), with Abt Associates and Decision Information Resources. OES is supporting the contract in partnership with the Office of Management and Budget’s Evidence Team, the ARP Implementation Team, and other agency partners. Federal Executive Branch employees can learn more about the national evaluation and access materials at the MAX.gov site.

Learn more about the national evaluation (PDF)


OES is collaborating with the Office of Management and Budget Evidence Team and the ARP Implementation Team, as well as the U.S. Department of Treasury, the Department of Education, and other agencies, to undertake a portfolio of evaluations with agency partners to better understand how to improve awareness, access, and allocation of ARP programs and resources, focusing on ARP programs with equity goals. This set of evaluations will be intentional and strategic in building evidence to understand the role of ARP programs and supported interventions in improving outcomes for historically underserved populations.

OES team members will work closely with agency partners to design and implement an evaluation, analyze data, and share findings.

Learn more about how the collaboration works (PDF)

Relevant OES Resources

Date Resource
October 20, 2022 News Release: GSA Awards Multi-Year Evaluation Contract on Equity and the ARP
June 9, 2022 Blog: Learning What Works to Build an Equitable Recovery
December 15, 2021 Blog: GSA to Build Evidence to Advance Equitable Outcomes through the ARP