Improving the systems that improve lives

Since 1976, we've been helping to craft community-based, person-driven service systems. We're passionate about supporting leaders and policymakers, and the people they serve, because we share the same goal: to see all people living healthy, fulfilling lives as empowered, respected members of society.

Our Team

Our team of more than 50 dedicated professionals provides research, support and guidance to clients looking to develop more efficient and responsive service systems. Combining rigorous quantitative research with community-based participatory research, we strive for more-impactful results and more specific roadmaps to improvement.

We work across all sectors and program areas in health and human services, addressing the needs of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities; people experiencing behavioral health disorders; children, youth and families; seniors and people with physical disabilities; people experiencing housing instability or homelessness; and states and communities looking to promote population health.

Our Beliefs

  • We believe in person-driven, outcomes-oriented service models. logo
    We believe in person-driven, outcomes-oriented service models.

    Services and service delivery that focus on the aspirations and real needs of service users are more likely to foster positive and lasting change.

  • We believe in collaborative, inclusive research. logo
    We believe in collaborative, inclusive research.

    The people and communities affected by an issue are experts and should hold meaningful roles in any effort to devise solutions.

  • We believe that equitable policies underpin healthy, thriving communities. logo
    We believe that equitable policies underpin healthy, thriving communities.

    To envision solutions that can create a stronger society for us all, we are continually challenging ourselves and our clients to be anti-ableist, antiracist, and to use an intersectional lens. We believe in equity-focused research and policy-advising, and dismantling deficit narratives.

  • We believe in integrated service delivery and whole-systems views. logo
    We believe in integrated service delivery and whole-systems views.

    Collaborative cross-program, cross-agency efforts can provide the right mix of services at the right time—improving not only the quality, coordination, and cost‐effectiveness of services but also outcomes.

  • We believe in innovation and continuous improvement. logo
    We believe in innovation and continuous improvement.

    Lives, communities, and societies change, and so do service needs. Relevant and timely research can identify areas for program and service delivery improvement, and data insights should continually help to shape offerings to ensure they produce meaningful outcomes.

  • We believe in data-driven decisions and evidence-based practices. logo
    We believe in data-driven decisions and evidence-based practices.

    Evidence-based approaches are a responsible use of fiscal dollars.

Building an optimal service system

We can guide you through a full system redesign or just a particular step in the process - all with an emphasis on collaborating and communicating with stakeholders. Our goal is to help you successfully execute a shared vision for an optimal system.

At the heart of our approach is an abiding commitment to respecting the rights and individuality of service users. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to human services, and greater choice and flexibility in the service mix can create self-sustaining improvements for people and populations: improving quality of service, outcomes, and overall wellbeing.

Learn More About Our Projects
Learn More About Our Services

Our History

  • 5


  • 28

    Federal Agencies

  • 50


  • over100

    Counties & Cities

In 40+ years in operation, we’ve had the privilege of working with hundreds of health and human service leaders and partners. Our methods are trusted and proven.

How Can We Help?


We're driven by the same mission as our clients: supporting health and well-being in ways that empower people and respect their dignity. Below is a sample of our recent collaborators.

Federal Agencies

  • U.S. Department of Education
  • U.S. Department of Health & Human Services:
    • Administration for Children and Families
    • Administration for Community Living
    • Administration on Intellectual & Developmental Disabilities
    • Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services
    • Health Resources & Services Administration
    • Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation
    • Public Health Service
    • Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration
  • U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

State Agencies

  • District of Columbia Department of Behavioral Health
  • Alabama Division of Developmental Disabilities
  • California Department of Developmental Services
  • California Department of Health Care Services
  • Colorado Department of Human Services, Division of Child Welfare
  • Connecticut Department of Children and Families, Dept. of Public Health
  • Delaware Division of Developmental Disabilities Services
  • Hawaii Department of Health, Developmental Disabilities Division
  • Illinois Council on Developmental Disabilities
  • Indiana Family and Social Services Administration
  • Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals
  • Maine Department of Health & Human Services
  • Maine Department of Health & Human Services, Office of Aging & Disability Services
  • Maine Health Data Organization
  • Massachusetts Commission for the Blind
  • Massachusetts Department of Health and Human Services, Developmental Services
  • Minnesota Department of Human Services
  • Mississippi Department of Mental Health 
  • Missouri Division of Developmental Disabilities
  • Montana Department of Health & Human Services
  • New Hampshire Department of Health & Human Services
  • New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities
  • New Jersey Division of Mental Health & Substance Abuse
  • New Mexico Department of Health
  • New Mexico Department of Human Services, Medical Assistance Division
  • North Carolina Department of Health & Human Services
  • North Dakota Department of Human Services
  • Ohio Department of Job & Family Services, Department of Mental Health
  • Oregon Board of Higher Education
  • Oregon Department of Human Services
  • Oregon Department of Justice
  • Oregon Health Authority
  • Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare
  • Rhode Island 
  • South Dakota Department of Social Services
  • Vermont Green Mountain Care Board
  • Vermont Developmental Disabilities Council
  • Virginia Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Services 
  • West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources
  • Wisconsin
  • Manitoba Family Services, Manitoba, Canada


  • Oakland County Community Mental Health, Michigan
  • City of Rochester, New Hampshire
  • Job & Family Services of Clark County, Ohio
  • Pierce County, Washington
  • Summit County Children Services, Ohio
  • Milwaukee County Dept. of Health & Human Services Disabilities Services Division, Wisconsin
  • Wake County, North Carolina
  • Walla Walla County, Washington

Nonprofits and Private Sector Organizations

  • Acumen
  • Alliance for Open Society International
  • California HealthCare Foundation
  • Cambridge Health Alliance
  • CDM Group
  • Center for Improving Value in Health Care
  • Center for Public Representation
  • Community Access Unlimited
  • Datacorp
  • Deloitte
  • Florida Agency for Persons with Disabilities
  • Florida Association for Rehabilitation Facilities
  • Florida Developmental Disabilities Facilities
  • Foundation for Excellence in Mental Health Care
  • Hogg Foundation for Mental Health
  • Maine Medical Center
  • National Empowerment Center
  • National Youth Leadership Network
  • New Hampshire Insurance Department
  • Qlarant
  • Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
  • Truven Health Analytics
  • United Way
  • Westat 

Strategic Partners

  • ADvancing States
  • Applied Self Direction
  • Arizona State University
  • Association of University Centers on Disabilities
  • Autistic Self Advocacy Network
  • Boston College
  • Burns & Associates, a Division of Health Management Associates
  • Collective Insight
  • Community Living Policy Center, Brandeis University
  • Desert Vista Consulting
  • Institute for Community Inclusion, University of Massachusetts
  • Institute on Community Integration, University of Minnesota
  • Institute on Disabilities, Temple University
  • Live & Learn
  • Mission Analytics
  • National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services
  • National Association of State Head Injury Adminstrators
  • National Association of State Mental Health Program Directors
  • New Editions Consulting
  • NORC at the University of Chicago
  • RTI International
  • Social Work Research Center, Colorado State University
  • Technical Assistance Collaborative
  • Temple University
  • Wisconsin Policy Forum

Large-scale systems integration is a challenging undertaking for states and communities. Using specific strategic approaches that account for that complexity, we can help facilitate comprehensive system planning.

David Hughes

HSRI President

How can we help?

Let's talk