Data: Not Just a Star Trek Android Anymore
CSAC Releases New Data Tool for Counties
October 27, 2016
As data becomes more available, it also becomes a more important resource for counties in making major policy and budget decisions. The problem is that county-related data is scattered. A few datasets are on this state agency’s website, another somewhere else. Some of it is available as a spreadsheet, but some is only in pdf.
The DataPile is CSAC’s new collection of up-to-date, county-by-county datasets, gathered from a wide variety of publicly available sources. They cover a range of issues, including demographics, caseloads, county finances, and more.
Whenever possible, the header of a particular dataset links to the original source so users can find data for previous reporting periods and, importantly, notes on the limitations of the data. The document will be updated frequently to add and update content.
The DataPile isn’t fancy, but it is functional. Presented as a simple spreadsheet across multiple tabs, users can copy the columns into new spreadsheets to perform further calculations, or use the information in word processors, pdfs, databases, or budgeting software.
Over time, CSAC will not only keep the information in the DataPile up to date, but will add historical datasets as separate spreadsheets.
The DataPile is available on CSAC’s ‘Data and Research’ page.
If you have suggestions or comments about this new tool, please contact Geoff Neill, CSAC’s principal analyst, at firstname.lastname@example.org.