Research & Evaluation
Since the inception of OneTable, we have conducted weekly internal evaluation of our resources, program, and platform. Additionally, we invest in wide-reaching quantitative, as well as deep-dive qualitative, research that we use to remain participant-centered.
Solo Shabbat Research
In mid-March 2020, we recognized that many young adults were quarantining alone, some perhaps immunocompromised, and we wanted to ensure that they could still access resources and a sense of community – so we lowered the minimum number of Shabbat participants to one. Then, in September 2020 we started asking them how it was going. This report explores insights and potential opportunities for OneTable, the Jewish young adult sector, and well beyond. You’ll see what we’ve learned, how this knowledge is changing the work we do, and what we can do together as our community recognizes and honors the ways people choose to be alone, together.
More COVID Young Adult Research
In early March 2020, we were preparing for a massive impact study with Benenson Strategy Group (BSG) – then COVID-19 happened, and we pivoted: We engaged BSG to field a pulse check survey to our community, and Sacred Design Lab and Designing Empathy to dive deep with journal entries and focus groups for a small sub-group of participants. These two studies (available below) were separate, but complementary; together they capture the juxtaposition of current events with the optimism for the future.
Research Advisory Board
To bolster high-quality national research and evaluation, OneTable launched a Research Advisory Board in spring 2019. This group provides strategic advice and direction to OneTable regarding high-level organizational research and evaluation activities.
Their mission includes: acting as a sounding board for OneTable research and evaluation activities; assisting in setting the strategic direction for OneTable’s research instruments and evaluation; and keeping OneTable apprised of new research and evaluation techniques and practices in the field at large.
MARK HANIS is a serial social entrepreneur. He is a Research Fellow with Stanford University’s Handa Center for Human Rights and International Justice and is co-founding Inclusive America, a nonprofit to increase diversity in government. Previously, Mark has helped found several social impact organizations: the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation at Georgetown University to engage global leaders to drive social change at scale; the Organ Alliance (now Organize) to address the unnecessary deaths due to a shortage of transplantable organs; and United to End Genocide to empower citizens and communities with the tools to prevent and stop genocide.
RELLA KAPLOWITZ* is the Senior Program Officer for Evaluation and Learning at the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation. Rella helps to make sure the Foundation has the right information to gain insights to inform its work, and works with grantees and partners to enhance their capacity for data, metrics, strategy, performance and evaluation. Rella is the author of the Schusterman Foundation’s Data Playbook, an online resource for organizations looking to enhance their use of data for decision-making and storytelling. In a volunteer capacity, Rella is a board member of Elijah’s Journey. Rella also serves as a peer support counselor for the National Capital Region chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. Rella holds a degree in Psychology from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and is a Six Sigma Green Belt.
TOVA KATZ* joined the One8 Foundation in 2012 to work on the Foundation’s Israel and Jewish life portfolio. In her role as Portfolio Manager, Tova is responsible for sourcing, supporting and managing the Foundation’s Israel engagement and Jewish Life portfolios, comprised primarily of North American-based grantees. Tova works closely with the leadership teams of her grantees, providing strategic planning and ongoing advisory support. Tova received her MBA from Brandeis University’s Heller School for Social Policy and Management in 2012. Prior to that, she spent four years at the Foundation for Jewish Camp. Tova earned a BA in history from Columbia University and is a Wexner Graduate Fellow and Davidson Scholar. Tova lives in Boston with her husband and 4 children, and enjoys playing ice hockey in her free time.
DR. ARIELLE LEVITES is the managing director at CASJE (the Collaborative for Applied Studies in Jewish Education). CASJE’s mission is to improve the quality of knowledge that guides Jewish education practice and policy. Her research focuses on contemporary American Jewish education. Additionally, she has conducted a number of applied studies on behalf of American Jewish educational enterprises, with a focus on young adults and teens. She holds a BA from Brown University in Religious Studies, a MSEd in Religious Education from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD from NYU in Education and Jewish Studies.
ELI SCHAAP* is a Senior Vice President at The Steinhardt Foundation For Jewish Life. His focus is on transforming Jewish education through consensus decision-making, action research, and other elements of change organizing. Previously, he worked as a consultant to several national Jewish organizations and also served as the Associate Executive Director of CAJE. Prior to that, he worked for twenty years in the business community. Eli received his training in a Ph.D. program in Ecology and Evolution at SUNY at Stony Brook. He has conducted action research and published several articles on the culture of employment, recruitment and retention of Jewish educators, on early childhood Jewish education, and on institutional finances. He has frequently presented his research at the Conference of the Network for Research in Jewish Education. He has also been deeply involved in the development and operation of Hebrew language charter schools and currently serves on the board of Hatikvah International Academy Charter School in East Brunswick, NJ.
BARBARA SCHNEIDER is the John A. Hannah Chair University Distinguished Professor in the College of Education and Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. Her research focuses on how the social contexts of schools and families influence the academic and social well-being of adolescents as they move into adulthood. Barbara has published 16 books and over 100 refereed journal articles that focus on the family, social context of schooling, and sociology of knowledge. She received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University. She is the past President of the American Educational Research Association, a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a fellow in the National Academy of Education. She recently was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Helsinki and elected into Finland’s Academy of Science and Letters.
LEE SHULMAN is an American educational psychologist, educator, and reformer whose work focused on teaching and teacher education. He is a professor emeritus at Stanford Graduate School of Education, past president of the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, past president of the American Educational Research Association, and the recipient of several awards recognizing his educational research. Lee is credited with popularizing the phrase “pedagogical content knowledge” (PCK). He was the 2006 recipient of the University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award in Education for his 2004 book, The Wisdom of Practice: Essays on Teaching, Learning and Learning to Teach. He received his BA in philosophy, and MA and PhD in educational psychology at the University of Chicago.
JAKE SULLIVAN s a researcher at Nike, focusing on the needs and perspectives of the company’s diverse employee base and supporting employee-centric design in HR. Jake studied Social Psychology at Colorado College and the University of Cambridge. Additionally, Jake was a Moishe House Portland resident from 2017 to 2020.
CASPER TER KUILE is building a world of joyful belonging. In the middle of enormous changes in how we “do” community and spirituality, Casper connects people and creates projects that help us live lives of greater meaning and depth. He is the co-founder of Sacred Design Lab, a research and design consultancy working to create a culture of belonging and becoming. He is the co-author of How We Gather and Care of Souls, and has been covered in the New York Times, the Boston Globe, and the Atlantic. Casper holds Masters of Divinity and Public Policy degrees from Harvard University, and remains a Ministry Innovation Fellow at Harvard Divinity School.
* Denotes “Key Observer” status