Ballmer Group Invests in the Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center


Ballmer Group has awarded the Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center at The University of Texas at Austin LBJ School of Public Affairs a multi-year award as part of their efforts to improve economic mobility of the nation’s children and families. Ballmer Group, founded by philanthropist and civic activist Connie Ballmer and former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, focuses on community and systems-level impact to reduce and eliminate racial and economic opportunity barriers.

Decades of science on the developing child show that our earliest experiences have lifelong consequences for our health and behaviors. Research also shows that investing in families during a child’s foundational prenatal to age 3 developmental period can improve quality of life in the short and long term.

The Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center’s mission is to identify the most effective state-level policies and strategies that foster the conditions in which children and families thrive and that reduce racial and ethnic disparities in opportunities and outcomes.

Grounded in comprehensive reviews of the most rigorous evidence available, the inaugural 2020 Prenatal-to-3 State Policy Roadmap details 11 state policies and strategies with the strongest evidence of effectiveness to date that impact the foundational prenatal to age 3 developmental period. Policymakers and stakeholders can also see where their state stands on each of these 11 policies and strategies in their supplemental state Roadmap. The Policy Impact Center has quickly become an invaluable, unbiased resource to leaders seeking to strengthen prenatal-to-3 systems of care in their state.

“We are thrilled about partnering with Ballmer Group and appreciate their work in supporting families’ economic mobility. Their recognition of the importance of a child’s earliest years, the use of rigorous evidence in decision making, and tackling systemic racism in our public systems aligns very strongly with what the Policy Impact Center does and prioritizes,” said Dr. Cynthia Osborne, director of the Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center and Associate Dean of the LBJ School of Public Affairs. 

Ballmer Group’s generous grant will support the work of the Policy Impact Center including:

The Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center was launched at The University of Texas at Austin in August 2019 with initial support from the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Foundation and the Buffett Early Childhood Fund.


In a newly published essay, Prenatal-to-3 Policy Impact Center Executive Director Dr. Cynthia Osborne outlines the five stages of public policy implementation—and the research critical for each stage. The essay draws from a rich history
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