Home News Center Webinar: Social Impact Bonds/Pay for Success -- Pros, Cons, Promises and Risks

Webinar: Social Impact Bonds/Pay for Success -- Pros, Cons, Promises and Risks

September 18, 2014
Benjamin Chambers


Recorded: October 7, 2014

Social impact bonds (SIBs) are becoming increasingly popular throughout the U.S. This is largely due to President Obama’s FY 2015 budget, which provided funds for states to undertake "pay for success" programs. But are SIBs a viable option for funding juvenile justice reform work?

Join experts John Roman, Kyle McKay, and Kelly Walsh for a presentation on the risks and challenges that SIBs pose for funding reform work, as well as critical developments that SIBs must make to become a well-established funding option for large-scale social interventions in the juvenile justice arena.


>> Download the webinar PowerPoint presentation here

>> Download a recording of the full webinar here.

>> Download our Fiscal Policy Center's tip sheet on social impact bonds here

During the webinar's original broadcast, the Urban Institute's logo appeared mistakenly on Kyle McKay's slides. We apologize for the error and wish to clarify that while Drs. Roman and Walsh are affiliated with the Urban Institute, Mr. McKay's comments are his own, and are in no way associated with or representative of the Urban Institute.  


About the Presenters:

John K. Roman: John K. Roman, Ph.D. is a Senior Fellow in the Justice Policy Center at the Urban Institute, where his research focuses on evaluations of innovative crime control policies and justice programs. Dr. Roman is directing several studies funded by the National Institute of Justice; he is working to adapt Social Impact Bonds to public safety reform efforts for the Bureau of Justice Assistance; and evaluating the Juvenile Justice Reform and Reinvestment Initiative for the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Co-editor of Cost-Benefit Analysis and Crime Control, and Juvenile Drug Courts and Teen Substance Abuse, and the author of dozens of scholarly articles and book chapters, Dr. Roman is a lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania, where he teaches about statistical methods and social impact bonds, and contributes to Atlantic Cities and The Huffington Post.


Kelly Walsh, PhD: Kelly Walsh, Ph.D., is a senior research associate in the Justice Policy Center at the Urban Institute. Dr. Walsh focuses on innovative social financing arrangements and social science research in forensic science. She is most interested in questions around the efficacy of forensic processes, the causes of wrongful convictions and the mechanisms of private investment for the sake of public good. Together with Dr. Roman, she co-directs the only federally-funded research projects on social impact bonds and "pay for success" to date. Through these projects, they, along with their co-authors, have produced four social impact bond/pay for success products designed to translate these difficult concepts to local and state leaders. 


Kyle McKay: Kyle McKay is a policy analyst with the Texas Legislative Budget Board. As a former analyst with the Maryland Department of Legislative Services he conducted a feasibility study of social impact bonds for criminal justice programs. His research has been presented to the budget committees of the Maryland General Assembly and the U.S. Congress and has been cited in a variety of outlets including Reuters, The Bond Buyer, Nonprofit Quarterly, the Stanford Social Innovation Review, and The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Mr. McKay’s experience in public policy includes positions with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, National Governors Association, and the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. He holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the University of Maryland School of Public Policy where he studied public finance and social policy.

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