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Using Stata Effectively

Stata is holding three 2-day sessions for new users. Sessions are $950 with a 15% discount for group enrollments of three or more.


Become intimately familiar with all three components of Stata: data management, analysis, and graphics. This two-day course is aimed at both new Stata users and those who wish to learn techniques for efficient day-to-day use of Stata. Upon completion of the course, you will be able to use Stata efficiently for basic analyses and graphics. You will be able to do this in a reproducible manner, making collaborative changes and follow-up analyses much simpler. Finally, you will be able to make your datasets self-explanatory to your co-workers and yourself when using them in the future.

The May 24-25 and June 20-21 are in Washington, DC and the October 24-25 session is in Las Vegas.

Go to this site for more training courses.

What Happens in Neighborhoods with Sharply Rising Home Values

Emily Badger of Wonkblog looks what happens when a neighborhood — Bedford-Stuyvesant in Brooklyn, specifically — experiences a sharp increase in home values, but income remains the same.

What Is “Normal America”?

Jed Kolko looked the demographics of each U.S. metropolitan area and measured how demographically similar they are to the U.S. as a whole, based on age, educational attainment, and race and ethnicity: “But that sense that the normal America is out there somewhere in a hamlet where they can’t pronounce “Acela” is misplaced. In fact, it’s not in a small town at all.”

Older Women Living Alone

Philip Cohen of the Family Inequality blog highlights a new Pew Research Center report on the share of U.S. women aged 65 and older living alone. The main finding of the report is that the number of women in this age group living alone has been trending downward since 1990. Pew attributes this to longer life expectancy for men, but Cohen thinks something more may be going on:

The tricky thing about this is the changing age distribution of the old population (the Pew report breaks the group down into 65-84 versus 85+, but doesn’t dwell on the changing relative size of those two groups).

Characteristics of Minimum Wage Workers, 2015

A new report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics us a picture of minimum wage workers in 2015. Some highlights (from the report website):

Age. Minimum wage workers tend to be young. Although workers under age 25 represented only about one-fifth of hourly paid workers, they made up about half of those paid the federal minimum wage or less. Among employed teenagers (ages 16 to 19) paid by the hour, about 11 percent earned the minimum wage or less, compared with about 2 percent of workers age 25 and older. (See table 1 and table 7.)

Gender. Among workers who were paid hourly rates in 2015, about 4 percent of women and about 3 percent of men had wages at or below the prevailing federal minimum. (See table 1.)

Full- and part-time status. About 7 percent of part-time workers (those who usually work fewer than 35 hours per week) were paid at or below the federal minimum wage, compared with about 2 percent of full-time workers. (See table 1 and table 9.)

State of residence. The states with the highest percentages of hourly paid workers earning at or below the federal minimum wage were in the South: Alabama, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Virginia (all were about 6 percent). The states with the lowest percentages of hourly paid workers earning at or below the federal minimum wage were in the West: Alaska, California, Oregon, and Washington (all were about 1 percent). It should be noted that some states have laws establishing higher minimum wage rates than the federal minimum wage. (See table 2 and table 3.)

H/T Data Detectives

Parent Work Hours

Nathan Yau has a nice visualization of the change in work hours of mothers and fathers from 1965 to 2014.

Public Opinion on Abortion

The Pew Research Center recently did a survey on abortion. Views have remained quite stable for the last 20 years: in 1995, 60% of Americans believed abortion should be legal in most cases and 38% believed it should be illegal, and in 2016, 56% believe it should be legal and 41% believe it should be illegal.

Twitter and Public Health

The NIH Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences blog highlighted research by Ann Marie White and Melanie Funchess on the use of “Twitter data to prevent violence and suicide through community-based helping networks.”

Their recent BSSR talk, “To tweet or not to tweet: Community-based participatory research approaches to advance wellness and violence prevention via social media,” highlighted their progress in developing community-based helping networks that take advantage of social media tools to improve public health in their neighborhoods.

Changing Causes of Death in Poor Countries

The World Bank has a new interactive chart showing how the leading causes of death are changing worldwide:

From The DataBlog:

Worldwide, the leading causes of death are changing, and they vary between rich and poor countries. In low-income countries, deaths from communicable diseases such as malaria and HIV/AIDS have fallen, while deaths from non-communicable diseases such as stroke and diabetes are on the rise.

Data USA

Data USA is a collaboration between Deloitte, Macro Connections at the MIT Media Lab, and Datawheel which is (according to their About page), “the most comprehensive website and visualization engine of public US Government data.” The data is pulled from sources such as the American Community Survey, the Bureau of Economic Analysis, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the visualizations are powered by D3plus, an open source visualization engine.

H/T Flowing Data