Stephen Bell

Vice President

Stephen H. Bell, Ph.D., is a senior economist with extensive experience evaluating the effects of social and market interventions on the well-being of disadvantaged Americans and poor people worldwide.

Dr. Bell specializes in econometric impact analysis. He has helped design many large-scale social experiments using random assignment in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Italy. Dr. Bell is also an expert in the use of quasi-experimental estimation techniques when randomization is not possible. His recent work has focused on experimental trials of employment assistance, housing and nutrition interventions, and international agricultural development initiatives.

Dr. Bell has led evaluation studies to support the U.S. Departments of Labor, Health & Human Services, Agriculture, Education, and Housing & Urban Development—as well as the U.S. Agency for International Development and the Social Security Administration. His original methodologies for measuring the impacts of social programs have been published in several peer-reviewed statistics and evaluation journals, a U.S. Department of Labor field guide on evaluation methods, and a book on quasi-experimental impact analysis techniques. Dr. Bell is a recipient of the Raymond Vernon Memorial Award for the best article published in the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management in 2018.

In recognition of his contributions to the field, Dr. Bell has been named a Westat Senior Statistical Fellow and serves on the Statistical Fellows Committee, which provides consultation on important survey statistics issues and addresses recent advances in applied statistics.

Education

Ph.D., Economics, University of Wisconsin–Madison
M.S., Economics, University of Wisconsin–Madison
B.A. (magna cum laude), Economics, Knox College

Areas of Expertise

Selected Publications

Orr L.L., Olsen R.B., Bell S.H., Schmid I., Shivji A., and Stuart E.A. (2019).

Using the results from rigorous multisite evaluations to inform local policy decisions.

Gubits D., Shinn M., Wood M., Brown S.R., Dastrup S.R., and Bell S.H. (2018).

What interventions work best for families who experience homelessness? Impact estimates from the Family Options Study.

Collins A.M., Klerman J.A., Briefel R., Rowe G., Gordon A., Logan C., Wolf A., and Bell S.H. (2018).

A summer nutrition benefit pilot program and low-income children's food security.

Olsen R.B., Bell S.H., and Nichols A. (2018).

Using preferred applicant random assignment (PARA) to reduce randomization bias in randomized trials of discretionary programs.

Klerman J.A., Wolf A., Collins A.M., Bell S.H., and Briefel R. (2017).

The effects the Summer Electronic Benefits Transfer for Children Demonstration has on children’s food security.

Stuart E.A., Bell S.H., Ebnesajjad C., Olsen R.B., and Orr L.L. (2017).

Characteristics of school districts that participate in rigorous national educational evaluations.

Bell S.H. and Peck L.R. (2016).

On the “how” of social experiments: Experimental designs for getting inside the black box.

Bell S.H. and Stuart E.A. (2016).

On the “Where” of social experiments: The nature and extent of the generalizability problem.

Bell S.H. and Peck L.R. (2016).

On the feasibility of extending social experiments to wider applications.

Bell S.H., Olsen R.B., Orr L.L., and Stuart E.A. (2016).

Estimates of external validity bias when impact evaluations select sites nonrandomly.

Want to work with us?
You’ll be in great company.

About Us Careers

Westat Employees.
Westat Employee.
Client List
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
The National Institutes of Health
AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety
The Johns Hopkins University
University of Maryland Baltimore Campus
University of Denver
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
U.S. Department of Transportation
U.S. Department of Justice
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
U.S. Department of Education
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Toyota
The Verizon Foundation
Texas Education Agency
Baltimore Metropolitan Council
Teach for America
Social Security Administration
SiriusXM
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
NYC Mayor’s Office for Economic Opportunity
National Science Foundation
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services
Maryland Cancer Registry
Internal Revenue Service
Georgia Department of Transportation
DC Public Schools
ClearWay Minnesota
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning
University of Michigan
Forbes 2019: The Best Employers for DiversityForbes 2019: The Best Employers for Women

Westat is an Equal Opportunity Employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, veteran status, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, citizenship status, genetic information, gender identity, or any other protected status under applicable law. Notices to Employees & Applicants.