Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Advancing Employment for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

This project is home to research, training, and outreach activities that promote employment for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

We are funded by the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research in the Administration for Community Living (ACL) in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

The RRTC is a project of the Institute for Community Inclusion at the University of Massachusetts Boston.

Activities supported by the RRTC include:

(1) Choosing Work: Effective Knowledge Translation And Support For Individuals And Families

The goal of this line of research is to create a comprehensive information, outreach, and support framework for individuals and families that enables ready and timely access to information about employment throughout the lifespan. Research activities include a scoping literature review, online and in-person focus groups with individuals with IDD and their family members, and the development and testing of an intervention that promotes individual and family engagement in employment planning.

Contact: John Kramer

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(2) Increasing The Effectiveness Of Employment Consultants

This work will define a model for employment support that incorporates research, practice, job seeker support needs, organizational culture, and personal resources. Project partners and staff will implement an intervention to improve the quality of services provided by employment consultants through online training, data-based performance feedback, and facilitated peer-to-peer support.

Contact: Alberto Migliore

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(3) Building Capacity And Supporting Organizational Transformation For Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPS)

Project staff will develop a model framework and toolkit to support community rehabilitation providers in implementing an Employment First focus. The demonstration of an efficient, scalable strategy that enables CRPs to create change within their own organizations is a key feature of this research.

Contact: Jaimie Timmons

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(4) Policies And Practices Of High-Performing State Employment Systems

This research strand will define the characteristics of a high-performing state system that promote cross-agency and resource integration; identify effective state practices and policies that lead to employment outcomes; and describe Employment First policy implementation and outcomes at both the national and state level.

Contact: Allison Hall

Project Team

John Butterworth, Principal Investigator;

Allison Hall, Co-Principal Investigator and Project Director; Lead, Policy Strand

Cindy Thomas, Training and Technical Assistance Director;

John Kramer, Lead, Individuals and Families Strand;

Alberto Migliore, Lead, Employment Consultant Strand;

Jaimie Timmons, Lead, Community Rehabilitation Provider Strand;


You can also search for RRTC publications in the complete database of ThinkWork Publications by clicking here.


Organizational Transformation: From Workshops to Community Employment

Employment Support Professionals: Leaders for Change

Does All Mean All? Culturally Diverse Families and Access to Services

Financial Well-Being: Reframing the Conversation

Informed Choice and Employment First: What Does It Really Mean?

"44" SeriesOur webinar series takes a fresh look at issues and opportunities around employment for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). That’s why we call it New Conversations About Integrated Employment. These webinars encourage creative thinking, and provoke reactions. Each conversation brings an original perspective to topics around IDD and employment. 

Click here to browse our 44 series webinars...


RRTC Fact Sheet

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Integrating Research, Training, and Knowledge Translation

Bringing Employment First to Scale: CRP Organizational Change

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Policy and State-level Strategies to Promote Employment

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Achieving Best Practice in Employment Supports

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Knowledge Translation for Individuals and Families

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Who are Employment Consultants? Characteristics of the workforce that connects jobseekers with intellectual and developmental disabilities to employment

The Truth Comes From Us: Supporting Workers with Developmental Disabilities

Bringing Employment First to Scale: Organizational Transformation: Guiding Principles for Community Providers

Project Partners

The Arc of the United States

Research and Training Center on Community living at the University of Minnesota

National Association of State Directors of Developmental Disabilities Services

Self-Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE)

APSE (the Association of People Supporting Employment First)