Are social programs really making a difference?
According to Margaret Wente, no one knows. Social programs are not tracked or their outcome measured.
Take homelessness for example.
Most homeless programs do not have adequate resources to maintain long-term contact with residents after they leave the program. While many programs offer to extend services, it is normally up to the former residents themselves to determine whether to remain in contact with the program. Most choose not to remain in contact. This makes it difficult to obtain feedback and measure the long-term effectiveness of the program.
Should limited resources be spent helping more people or measuring outcomes?