The Youth Data Archive is an initiative aimed at helping communities improve youth development outcomes by linking data on individual youth from different sectors of society. Partners in the YDA include school districts; community college districts; county agencies including education, human services; city agencies including recreation and parks departments; and youth-serving nonprofit organizations. The John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities (JGC) at Stanford University, in collaboration with the SPHERE Institute, houses the archive, develops agreements with nonprofit and government agencies in selected counties and communities. The JGC also facilitates groups’ investigation of available data.
For the Youth Data Archive, there are explicit routines for identifying the goals and concerns of communities. Staff at the JGC provide research support for DBIR projects involving design with communities. The JGC research helps community coalitions develop and use evidence to inform design. The researchers are also developing theory related to a “youth sector” or “societal sector” approach to supporting community youth development.
The Youth Data Archive is supported by local funding, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and [ASK]. Youth Data Archive analyses can also be conducted using a fee‐for‐service model with specific community partners.