Two Generations. One Future.

Ascend at the Aspen Institute is a hub for breakthrough ideas and collaborations that move children and their parents toward educational success and economic security. Ascend takes a two-generation approach to our work – focusing on children and their parents together – and we bring a gender and racial equity lens to our analysis.

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Forging Ahead: The 2Gen Practice Institute


“It seemed that way in the 1960s, at the height of the civil rights movement, when America itself felt as if it might burst at the seams – so much tension, so many storms. But the people of conscience never left the house. They never ran away. They stayed, they came together and they did…

Making Tomorrow Better Together: A Guide to Outcomes for 2Gen Policymakers


This report leads with 5 principles policymakers should consider when designing evaluation plans for their 2Gen efforts: Measure and account for outcomes for both children and parents; Embed learning and evaluation in policy design and systems development; Use multiple approaches; Use and promote data; and Build internal capacity and ensure continuous feedback through evaluation efforts.…

Legislative proposals that could help, or hurt, families

The past few months have been a whirlwind of policy proposals and deliberations at the Congressional level. Most recently, the House of Representatives passed sweeping changes to the US tax code, with the Senate slated to debate and hold a vote on their version of the legislation after Thanksgiving. While this proposal carries numerous implications…

Five Ideas from Colorado’s 2Gen Statewide Conference

Golden, Colorado is a quintessential main street community with boutiques that encourage browsing, yummy wood-fired pizza, and the stunning backdrop of the Rockies. It’s probably not the first place you’d think of for a high-powered gathering of the state’s top policy players. Yet, here they were for a packed 36 hours focused on what it…