ATLANTA — Georgia State University, the University of Georgia (UGA) and the Georgia Institute of Technology — the three R-1 research institutions in the University System of Georgia — have been awarded a $400,000 Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation 2022 Knowledge Challenge Grant to study the relationship between merit-based scholarship receipt and highly valued entrepreneurship career paths.
The three-year project, led by the interdisciplinary project team of Ross Rubenstein from Georgia State, Susan Cohen from UGA and Paige Clayton from Georgia Tech, seeks to understand whether Georgia’s HOPE Scholarship increases the rate of new business formation in Georgia and whether the merit-based HOPE and Zell Miller scholarships influence entrepreneurial activity differently across student groups, communities and geographic regions, such as rural vs. urban.
The team will gain critical context by working with the Georgia Policy Labs, a research-practice partnership to improve outcomes for students and families. The Georgia Policy Labs relies on expertise from its partners, including the University System of Georgia, to ensure researchers understand the programs, initiatives and contextual factors that are often invisible in data. The partnership ensures insights are actionable to improve policies and programs.
“We’re excited to have been selected as a Kauffman Foundation Knowledge Challenge grantee,” said Rubenstein. “Our research will help improve our understanding of entrepreneurship and provide actionable evidence not just for Georgia institutions, but for those looking to grow entrepreneurship across the U.S.”
The grant was one of 15 Knowledge Challenge Grants awarded this year. The private, nonpartisan foundation based in Kansas City, Mo., seeks to build inclusive prosperity through a prepared workforce and entrepreneur-focused economic development.
“The research projects selected for this portfolio all look toward the future and will help us better understand the systems and structures needed to support inclusive prosperity,” said Jessica Looze, director of knowledge creation and research for the Kauffman Foundation.
Dan E. Sweat Distinguished Chair in Educational & Community Policy
Public Management & Policy
Professor Ross Rubenstein’s research focuses on public finance and education policy, including funding equity and adequacy in education, public sector performance and efficiency measurement, budgeting and resource allocation in school districts, and college scholarship programs. He has received a number of awards for his research and teaching, and his work has been funded by organizations including the U.S. Department of Education, American Education Research Association and Russell Sage Foundation. He has conducted training programs in public finance and budgeting for government officials from numerous countries and served as a staff member on Georgia’s Education Reform Study Commission.