Opportunity to Participate in a Telehealth Study

On behalf of the Maryland Health Care Commission (MHCC), an independent regulatory agency that works to inform health care decision-making and increase access to affordable care, NORC and Optimal Solutions Group are recruiting participants, ages 18 and up, for a study on telehealth.

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Helping Organizations Achieve Impact: Optimal Join Sponsors for UMD Social Sciences Workshop

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In October 2021, the University of Maryland, College Park will host a workshop for individuals in academia, industry, and government to discuss how academic-corporate partnerships can advance social, behavioral, and organizational science research to impact society and science.

The two-part event will kick-off with virtual session comprised of subject matter experts and partners. One goal of the workshop is to bring awareness to the opportunities that exist to collaborate within multiple disciplines of science, including behavioral and economic sciences. The workshop will also highlight social science and the opportunities that partners, and industries have to make an impact within the discipline. Most importantly, this will allow attendees and panelists the opportunity to learn and network with the community, industry representatives and researchers in social science.

Optimal Solutions Group (Optimal) will support the workshop as a sponsor for this event. Alongside Optimal joins the partners National Science Foundation, MITRE and the Consortium of Social Science Associations. Optimal’s collaboration and sponsorship with the University of Maryland, College Park schools is a relationship that has spanned almost a decade. From classroom talks to the HCIL symposium and judging competitions, Optimal and its staff have always enjoyed collaborating with the university to discuss new ideas and educational opportunities.

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Optimal Solutions Group, LLC

Founded in 2000, Optimal Solutions Group, LLC, is a nonpartisan public policy research and technical assistance firm that stands out for its quantitative expertise and innovative approaches to provide rigorous, data-driven research and technical assistance to government agencies, corporations, nonprofit organizations and philanthropic foundations. Located at the University of Maryland’s Discovery District in College Park, Optimal is a leader in driving real-time public policy research. Optimal has 60+ employees, including multidisciplinary researchers with backgrounds in economics, education, health, housing, sociology, statistics, information management and entrepreneurship. Optimal has four research centers—Health, Education, Housing and Workforce Development, and Social Policy—as well as an International Practice, Analytics Group, and Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center.

Optimal Will Present Findings on the Effects of Federal Government Contracting Opportunities for Small Businesses at Fall Research Conference

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Four representatives from Optimal Solutions Group LLC (Optimal) will present research papers on the effects of federal contracting opportunities for small businesses at the Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management’s (APPAM) 43rd Annual Fall Research Conference in Austin, Texas, this November.

As part of the panel “The Effects of Government Procurement Policies and Practices in Advancing Small Business Contracting Opportunities,” Optimal’s President Dr. Mark Turner and Research Associate Andrey Vinokurov will present “The Effects of Set-Aside Procurement on the Availability of Women-Owned Small Businesses in Federal Contracting.” The Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) federal contracting program is one of several programs that Congress has approved to provide greater opportunities for small businesses to win federal contracts. Recent research by Optimal reveals that WOSBs availability (proportion of WOSBs that are ready, willing, and able compared to all ready, willing, and able firms in each industry) is low when compared to the relative size of women in the population. This study measures the responsiveness of relative and absolute availability of WOSBs that are ready, willing, and able to perform federal contracting in response to federal agencies’ use of set-asides and sole-source contracts.

As part of the same panel, Data Scientist Sadaf Asrar and Business Intelligence Analyst Yash Kothari will present “Effects of the 8(a) Program in Increasing the Utilization of Small Disadvantaged Businesses in Federal Government Contracting.” The federal government established the 8(a) program to improve the capacity and supplier base of small businesses owned and operated by socially and economically disadvantaged members of society. To help provide a level playing field, the government limits competition for certain contracts to businesses that participate in the 8(a) program. The objective of this paper is to understand the market for goods and services demanded by federal agencies and those supplied by 8(a) businesses as well as to examine the performance of 8(a) businesses in obtaining federal contracts as they progress from the initial development stage to the transitional stage of the program and assess how they fare once they graduate. 

The APPAM Fall Research Conference is a multi-disciplinary research conference attracting the highest quality research on a wide variety of important current and emerging policy and management issues.

Visit APPAM conference and panel for more information.

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Optimal Solutions Group, LLC

Founded in 2000, Optimal Solutions Group, LLC, is a nonpartisan public policy research and technical assistance firm that stands out for its quantitative expertise and innovative approaches to provide rigorous, data-driven research and technical assistance to government agencies, corporations, nonprofit organizations and philanthropic foundations. Located at the University of Maryland’s Discovery District in College Park, Optimal is a leader in driving real-time public policy research. Optimal has 60+ employees, including multidisciplinary researchers with backgrounds in economics, education, health, housing, sociology, statistics, information management and entrepreneurship. Optimal has four research centers—Health, Education, Housing and Workforce Development, and Social Policy—as well as an International Practice, Analytics Group, and Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center.

Revelo Software selected to join Forefront 2020 Industry Program

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Revelo Software has been selected to join this year’s Forefront industry program as an early-stage software company on September 22-23, 2020. Revelo’s co-founder, Tracye Turner will be presenting Revelo transforms and automates data collection and big data needs. To learn more about Forefront 2020 and register for the event, click here

Click the link to read the official press release from Forefront https://forefront2020.org/news-2/

Established entrepreneurs share their stories

“Entrepreneurship Matters” is a conversation with local up and coming and established entrepreneurs. Date: Thursday, September 10, 2020, 1 PM to 2 PM. Speakers: Tracye Turner, Tina C.Williams-Koroma, Esq. Moderator: Alicia Wilson.

Tracye Turner, EVP/COO, Optimal Solutions Group, recently participated in Johns Hopkins University’s “Entrepreneurship Matters” series. Entitled “A Conversation with Entrepreneurs Tracye Turner and Tina Williams-Koroma,” the conversation ranged across a variety of topics and issues common to small business. The series is hosted by Alicia Wilson, Vice President for Economic Development at The Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Health System. The link to the talk is here: https://www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=1025848981179027.

While both Ms. Turner and Ms. Williams-Koroma spoke of their particular challenges in starting new business ventures, some common themes emerged:

  • Developing entrepreneurial skills as an “intrapreneur” in a corporate environment.
  • The need for grit and determination in starting any new venture.
  • The necessity of partnerships for getting a business off the ground.
  • The opportunities and pitfalls of various funding mechanisms.

Tracye also discussed the evolution of Optimal Solutions, which itself is a successful entrepreneurial effort. In particular she noted the launch of two new digital productions:

  • e-Editor: A site for identifying and assigning editors and proofreaders to suit your needs for independent contractors.
  • e-508: A site for creating and modifying documents that are accessibility compliant.

The question-and-answer forum also included questions from virtual attendees at this Facebook live event.

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