Transforming Regional Data

Scenario: A suburban Boston county with 34 cities and towns struggles to address problems and think beyond municipal borders given a lack of regional planning and collaborative tools.

Challenge

  1. Build a regional identity for the county out of a patchwork of differing municipalities.
  2. Use data to identify and raise money to address the county’s most pressing problems.
  3. Tell stories with the data in a compelling way that draws residents, policymakers, local leaders and funders into collaborative problem-solving.

What CGR Delivered

  • Expert consultation and assistance with stakeholder engagement to identify key areas and select data indicators to track.
  • Data collection and analysis of 100 quality-of-life indicators.
  • Data stories highlighting connections between indicators and key issues in the county.
  • An attractive, easy-to- use indicators website drawing users into the data and conversations about issues.

Result and Impact

  • Foundation has endowment campaign aimed at providing an ongoing source of funding to address community issues.
  • Income inequality has been identified as the top issue to work on in the near term.
  • Data on issues raising from opioid abuse to affordable housing to educational performance is available to the entire county.