Archive for the 'Data & Methods' Category

Page 2 of 33

Census Bureau Retires Easy Stats

As of 9/30/2016, Easy Stats will no longer be available. To access data from the American Community Survey, use American FactFinder or QuickFacts. You can provide feedback here.

According to Data Detectives, “The retirement of the application is a result of a CEDSCI data tools assessment from earlier this year. The assessment looked at consolidating data tools to eliminate redundancy and also streamline our data dissemination offerings on”

Creating Residential Histories

This is a report on the NCI/SEERS web portal on a way to create residential histories of respondents/decadents for epidemiological research. The report (below) details how three commercial vendors were able to match the residential history of a small sample of federal government employees. Also available are the algorithms and software to reconcile conflicting addresses. Interested folks might want to browse other tools/papers in the NCI Geographical Information Systems and Science for Cancer Control webiste.

NCI/SEER Residential History Project
David Stinchcomb and Allison Roeser | Westat
May 2016

SAS residential history generation programs [3 programs]
[Summary] [Link to programs]

Coding for Data Visualization

Nathan Yau of Flowing Data has 5 tips for for learning to code for visualization: “being able to code your own visualization carries its own benefits like flexibility, speed, and complete customization.”

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.

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

Are secondary data users research parasites?

Even though NIH and NSF both have data sharing requirements, there is clearly some resistance to it. The best example is an editorial from the New England Journal of Medicine. Secondary data users are characterized as “research parasites.”

A rebuttal comes from a Science editorial with the title #IAmAResearchParasite.

Data Sharing
Dan L. Longo and Jeffrey Drazen | N Engl J Med
January 21, 2016

Marcia McNutt | Science
March 4, 2016

Demographic and Economic Profiles of the Super Tuesday States

In advance of Super Tuesday, the U.S. Census Bureau released demographic and economic profiles of the 12 states holding primaries and caucuses:

H/T Data Detectives

Hall of Justice

The Sunlight Foundation has created a project called Hall of Justice which gathers publicly available criminal justice datasets and research.

While not comprehensive, Hall of Justice contains nearly 10,000 datasets and research documents from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories and the federal government. The data was collected between September 2014 and October 2015. We have tagged datasets so that users can search across the inventory for broad topics, ranging from death in custody to domestic violence to prison population. The inventory incorporates government as well as academic data.

H/T Flowing Data

A New FiveThirtyEight Podcast

In addition to their weekly podcast on data, What’s the Point?, as well as their sports podcast, Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight has launched an election podcast called, appropriately enough, FiveThirtyEight Elections.