Voter Turnout in OECD Countries

Drew DeSilver of Pew Research Center analyzed voter data for OECD countries and found that the U.S. voter turnout ranks near the bottom among the voting-age population (53.5% in 2012), but much higher among registered voters (84.3%).

Mapping Race in the U.S.

Nathan Yau of Flowing Data created an interactive map showing the concentrations of Whites, Hispanics, Blacks, Asians, Native Americans, and Pacific Islanders at the county level.

The map above shows the most prevalent race in each county, based on data from the 2013 American Community Survey 5-year estimates. Select and deselect to make various comparisons. Or, select just one race to see distribution. Low, medium, and high saturation indicates whether the prevalent race percentage is below or about the same, higher (greater than the national average plus-minus interval), or much higher than the national average (at least 50% higher), respectively.

How to Ask for Datasets

Christian Kreibich at provides some helpful tips for asking other researchers to share their data.

I’m a systems researcher. I work with data, plenty of it. Over the past decade I have sent lots of data inquiries, and have received dozens. Judging by the latter it’s safe to say that people often go about this poorly, so I’d like to give a bit of advice regarding how to formulate inquiries to other researchers. But before we start, a few clarifications. This article is dataset-centric, but the concerns apply similarly to resources such as algorithms, methods, or code. Also, I assume you have done your background research and already know whom to ask. This is not a guide for finding useful stuff. Finally, the following is by no means a complete guide on how to collaborate with other researchers, but it might provide some tips regarding how to start such a collaboration.

H/T Flowing Data

Transportation Alternatives by Census Region

The U.S. Census American Housing Survey began gathering data on household public transportation use. A new infographic summarizes the results. Click on the image for a larger view.

Transportation Alternatives by Census Region

[Source: U.S. Census Bureau]

Moving to Opportunity Update

Both the New York Times Upshot and NPR’s Planet Money have stories this morning about Raj Chetty’s Equality of Opportunity Project (previous posted about here).

Life Expectancy in Baltimore

Christopher Ingraham of Wonkblog compares the life expectancies in Baltimore neighborhoods to each other and to countries around the world.

See also: The long, painful and repetitive history of how Baltimore became Baltimore.

Mentally Ill and in Prison

Ana Swanson of Wonkblog examines the “shocking number of mentally ill Americans…in prison instead of treatment“:

According to a report by the Treatment Advocacy Center…American prisons and jails housed an estimated 356,268 inmates with several mental illness in 2012—on par with the population of Anchorage, Alaska, or Trenton, New Jersey. That figure is more than 10 times the number of mentally ill patients in state psychiatric hospitals in the same year—about 35,000 people.

9 Charts about Wealth Inequality

The Urban Institute has produced 9 interactive charts describing wealth inequality over the last 50 years:

Why hasn’t wealth inequality improved over the past 50 years? And why, in particular, has the racial wealth gap not closed? These nine charts illustrate how income inequality, earnings gaps, homeownership rates, retirement savings, student loan debt, and lopsided asset-building subsidies have contributed to these growing wealth disparities.

Diversity and Segregation

Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight examines urban diversity and segregation:

Chicago deserves its reputation as a segregated city. But it is also an extremely diverse city. And the difference between those terms — which are often misused and misunderstood — says a lot about how millions of American city dwellers live. It is all too common to live in a city with a wide variety of ethnic and racial groups — including Chicago, New York, and Baltimore — and yet remain isolated from those groups in a racially homogenous neighborhood.

Generations and Partisanship

The Pew Research Center released a report examining the political leanings of different generations: A Different Look at Generations and Partisanship (PDF is here).

See also: A Deep Dive Into Party Affiliation (PDF here).