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Research Roadmap


PD&R’s research program is essential to helping the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development achieve its mission to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality, affordable homes for all. It is critical that we look ahead not only for the key research opportunities we will highlight for Congress in our annual budget request but also to develop a multi-year agenda that will ensure a robust pipeline of research for years to come.

That’s why we created the Research Roadmap. The Research Roadmap is our strategic research plan. Through extensive stakeholder engagement, the Roadmap identified critical, policy-relevant research questions and helps to guide PD&R research investments. 

Since the release of the original plan in 2013, PD&R has worked to advance a number of the research questions identified in the Roadmap and we’ve launch or expanded additional vehicles to help address more questions (Data License Agreements, the Multidisciplinary Research Team, and Research Partnerships.)

Importantly, the Roadmap is not a static document. It is a living document that drives PD&R’s work on a daily basis and that is why we’ve committed to revisiting and updating the plan on a regular basis. This fall PD&R is launching the first major update to the Research Roadmap. Stay tuned to this space for updates on the process and in the meantime join us in the Research Roadmap Forums today to jumpstart the conversation.

Why Create a Research Roadmap?

Throughout its history PD&R has sought to be forward looking and fully engaged with practitioners and researchers in the field of housing and urban development. However, a 2008 report from the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences found that in an era of limited financial and human resources, PD&R's research-agenda setting process had become "too insular" with "too much of a short term focus." As a result, the report concluded, PD&R was not "achieving its potential to contribute in a significant way to the ongoing internal and external discourses over the evolution of HUD programs and broader urban development policy."

With today's challenging U.S. housing market and tightening federal budgets, the need for PD&R's leadership and contribution of policy-relevant research has never seemed greater. PD&R must have a plan in place to continue to conduct projects that help us better understand the changing world around us and show a path to improved housing and development outcomes for all Americans. In addition, it is essential that PD&R’s research plan be created with input from a broad range of stakeholders from within HUD, across other federal agencies, and external researchers and practitioners.

Road Traveled Thus Far

At the heart of the original roadmapping process was an unprecedented effort to hear from our stakeholders, the offices within HUD and practitioners and researchers across the country. We asked our audiences two questions. First, "what are the questions that will be important to housing and community development over the next five to ten years?" Second, "where does PD&R have a comparative advantage in responding to these questions?" The response was tremendous. Through web-based input, conferences, listening sessions and webinars, PD&R had the opportunity to hear from hundreds of stakeholders.

After working through this feedback, we published our first Research Roadmap in 2013, listing priority research for HUD for FY 2014 through FY 2018. Since then, we’ve been working our way through the current Roadmap and we have a number of excellent research efforts underway that are clearly rooted in the roadmapping process.

For more on the road traveled thus far, listen to Kathy O’Regan, Assistant Secretary for Policy Development and Research, discuss the next steps for the Research Roadmap in an interview with GovInnovator. Learn more

The Road Ahead

While HUD's budget ultimately determine which projects will be developed in any given year, the Roadmap helps guide HUD in its work as a leader in housing and community development. PD&R plans to revisit the Roadmap on a regular basis to ensure that HUD’s research projects remain timely and relevant.

In fact, this fall we’re launching the first major update to the Roadmap. More details on the process and opportunities for engagement will be available shortly, but as part of our first phase of outreach PD&R is inviting participation in our online Research Roadmap Forums. To learn more about how you can join the conversation, click here.

About the HUD Research Roadmap FY14-18


Letter from the Secretary

Download the HUD Research Roadmap (Full Report)

Download Report Only

Download the Appendixes

Stay in Touch

Have a research question or project idea to contribute for the next Research Roadmap? Leave a comment in the Research Roadmap Forums.

You can reach the HUD Research Roadmap team or leave comments at PD&