No, you didn’t misunderstand: BetaGov assistance is free! We need a bumper sticker with this message since it is the inquiry that we get most often.
How is this possible? BetaGov is fortunate to receive funding from philanthropies that share our mission to encourage people in the public sector to come up with new ideas and test them. Funding from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation allows the BetaGov team to partner with criminal justice agencies to test innovative programs and procedures. Similarly, funding from the Smith Richardson Foundation supports BetaGov’s work in school settings.
BetaGov offers our expertise to design and implement trials and to analyze research data. Our funders cover our salaries, our travel, and all the materials that we need to assist our practitioners. This is critical to our mission, because charging our partners for our services would create long delays in setting up contracts. So, while we don’t say that research is free—after all, you may have to purchase supplies or other resources for your trial—our part in your research endeavor comes at no cost to you!