The State of the USA is focused on complete independence with regard to institutional governance, research parameters, scientific standards, evaluation criteria and operational matters. This independence and dedication to quality will make it a gold standard for the best data about the world we live in.

Paul Brest President of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation
» Read What Others are Saying
Diabetes on the Rise, New CDC Report Says


One out of every 10 adults in the U.S. has diabetes and that number may double or triple by 2050, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Use an interactive chart and stack graph to track diabetes prevalence in the U.S. from 1980 to 2008.

World Statistics Day: A Dispatch From '20-10-2010'


What do a bunch of statisticians do to celebrate World Statistics Day? Don't expect a parade down Independence Avenue.

Second-Generation Immigrants Learn, Earn More


New 2009 Census data finds second generation immigrants better educated, earning more and less likely to be in poverty than foreign-born immigrants. Compare the educational attainment of different generations of immigrants

New CDC Data Show Hispanics Outlive Other Americans


Hispanics are living longer than other racial and ethnic groups in the U.S., according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Compare the latest longevity estimates from the CDC.

Related: From Hundreds of Health Measures, 20 Seen as 'Key'

Hispanic Life Expectancy: Solving Data Concerns

CDC statisticians only recently have been able to overcome data-quality concerns and produce reliable life-expectancy estimates for Hispanics. What's been so hard about it?

Education, Marriage Gap Closing for Young Adults


For the first time in more than a century, people with a college degree are beating their less educated counterparts down the aisle, and white women under 40 are leading the charge.

America's Household Income Gap in Motion, 1967-2009


The income gap between the richest and poorest Americans is the widest on record, according to the latest Census release. A motion chart tracks the gap over 40-plus years.

Families and Children  
Kids Reading Study Highlights Concerns, Opportunities


A new study on the reading habits of kids finds digital or electronic devices may have a negative effect on reading time, family time and physical activity -- and 39 percent of children ages 9 to 17 years old think that the information that they find online is always correct. Use an interactive graph to see how advances in digital technology are changing a generation of young Americans.

Crime and Justice  
New Statistical Approach to Burglary, Related Violence


The stereotypical burglary of the unknown masked man armed with a gun, breaking into a house and violently attacking its residents, is usually not the case, according to a new Bureau of Justice Statistics report that uses a revised definition of burglary to assess burglary-related violence.

Depression Rates Vary Widely by State, Demographics

depressionthmb1.jpgA new health analysis shows a wide range of depression rates among states and finds demographic disparities in relation to gender, age, health insurance coverage and employment status.

Arts and Culture  
Smoking on the Silver Screen


Recent research finds exposure to on-screen smoking in feature films increases the likelihood that young people will start smoking tobacco. An interactive chart looks at the percentage of movies with on-screen smoking, from 1999 to 2008.

A Portrait of the Recession: Gross Domestic Product


Nearly three years after the start of the recession, U.S. economic output has yet to surpass December 2007 highs, according the latest estimates How has the economy performed since the recession officially ended in June 2009? Use an interactive graph to track GDP during the recession and since.

A Portrait of the Recession: Jobs and Unemployment


The recession officially ended in June of 2009, but unemployment remains high, according to Labor Department data and a recent report by the National Bureau of Economic Research. An interactive graph offers a look back at the unemployment rate and job growth since the start of the recession.

Crime and Justice  
Most US Public Defender Offices Stretched Thin


Most state, county and local public defender programs lack adequate resources to deal with their caseloads, according to two new reports by the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

Spike in Cohabitation Linked to Economy, not Romance


A new Census Bureau report says a sharp rise in the number of opposite-sex unmarried couples living together may be less about romance and pending marriage and more about jobs.

What do you think?

Arts and Culture  
Survey Finds Fewer Americans Participating in the Arts


Fewer Americans are participating in the arts, according to a recent study conducted by the National Endowment for the Arts and the U.S. Census Bureau. Use an interactive graph to track trends. See a breakdown of who participated by gender, race/ethnicity, age and education.

Americans Passing on Fruits and Veggies


Fewer than a third of U.S. adults consume recommended amounts of fruit and about a quarter eat the suggested number of vegetable servings each day. Compare fruit and vegetable consumption among U.S. adults by state and year.

Crime and Justice  
Most Popular Illicit Drugs, Most Likely Users


A federal survey finds illicit drug use is on the rise, with marijuana the illegal drug of choice and young males the most likely current users. Also noted, a significant increase in the number unemployed illicit users. A motion chart tracks usage by drug since 2002.

Record Numbers of Americans in Poverty as Rate Rises


Use an interactive chart to track the number of people living in poverty by region, the effects of recent recessions, and the poverty rate by state for the past three years.

Debt, Deficits Seen Hurting U.S. Competitiveness

WEF_Teaser.jpgThe U.S. is losing its competitive edge due to the fallout from the financial crisis, growing government debt and widening deficits, according to a new report on global competitiveness issued by the World Economic Forum. Use an interactive chart to see where the U.S. stands in the WEF's Global Competitiveness Index rankings.

Related: How Does the U.S. Compare in GDP, Health and Education? See for Yourself

Crime and Justice  
FBI Report: Violent Crime Down for 2009


Violent crime has fallen for the third straight year, according to new data from the FBI. Murder and robbery saw sharp declines, while rape fell by just 2.4 percent when compared to 2008 estimates. Use a stack graph to see violent crime trends over time.

Related: Corrections Population: One in Every 31 Adults

What People Are Saying About the State of the USA


A look at what people are saying about the State of the USA in the media, around the world and on the web. Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook.

Secondhand Smoke Exposure in Decline, says CDC


The U.S. smoking rate has held steady in recent years, but exposure to secondhand smoke has declined significantly, according to a pair of new studies from the Centers for Disease Control. Use an interactive chart to dig into the demographics of current smokers and secondhand smoke exposure.

New Education Stats Reveal States' Revenue Disparities


Revenue per pupil for public elementary and secondary school students vary greatly between and within states, according to a new report from the National Center for Education Statistics. Compare education funding by region and state for the 2007-2008 school year.

DataBasics, NFL-style: Understanding Mean vs. Median

Tom BradyA quarterback averages 1.75 touchdown passes for a season. But in more than half of his games, he threw for one touchdown or fewer. Which statistic is more important for evaluating his success?

Crime and Justice  
4.4 Percent of Prison Inmates Sexually Victimized, Says BJS Report


Nationwide, 4.4 percent of male and female prison inmates and 3.1 percent of jail inmates surveyed between 2008 and 2009 say they had been victims of sexual abuse, according to a new report by the Bureau of Justice Statistics.

Many Not Plugged In to Energy Saving Methods


Americans are taking steps to conserve energy, just not the most effective ones, according to a new report by Columbia University's Earth Institute.

Track Economic Security with Unemployment, Poverty

Economic Security Index

A new economic index sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation finds more Americans were economically insecure at the start of the recession than in 1985. Explore the ESI and compare it with the unemployment rate and the poverty rate through 2007.

At the Plate, a Statistical Puzzler

Lowellthmb.jpgIn 2007 Red Sox rookie Jacoby Ellsbury batted .353 while teammate Mike Lowell batted .324. In 2008, Ellsbury again outperformed Lowell, batting .280 to Lowell's .274. Therefore Ellsbury outperformed Lowell over the two-year stretch. True or false?

In the Red: The Recession and Job Growth


Despite recent economic growth, the U.S. still has a long way to go to reach pre-recession levels of employment. Use an interactive chart to compare job growth since the start of the recession in the private sector and in federal, state and local government.

Related: Unemployment Edged Up to 9.6 Percent for August

Crime and Justice  
Explore Property, Violent Crime Rates for Top U.S. Cities

crimetop50.gifNew York, the nation's most populous city, scores well below average for all of the offenses tracked by the FBI's annual Uniform Crime Report. Explore violent crime and property crime rates for the 50 most populous U.S. cities using a sortable table and interactive bar charts.

Recession Widens Gap Between Jobs and Jobless


There are more unemployed people than there are available job openings and the recession has made it much more challenging for them to find work, according to new data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Explore the number of job openings and the number of unemployed people over time.

Related: Unemployment Unchanged at 9.5 Percent for July

States Fall Short of National Obesity Goals for 2010


Every state in the union has fallen short of national health objectives for lowering obesity rates, according to new data from the Centers for Disease Control. Explore the data for adults ages 20 and up, and compare it to previous years going back to 2006.

Safety and Security  
Explore the World's WMD Profiles

wmdmaps.gifNavigate maps, satellite imagery and Google Earth to explore the profiles of countries identified by the independent Nuclear Threat Initiative as having any attempted, former or established programs capable of producing weapons of mass destruction.

Long-Term Unemployment Reaches New Heights


Long-term unemployment has risen to record highs during the current recession, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Use an interactive graph to compare mean and median unemployment data through seven cycles of economic boom and bust.

Related: Quantifying Long-Term Unemployment's Toll

Latest CO2 Emissions Data by Nation, Per Capita

Carbon dioxide emissions are rising worldwide with just 20 countries responsible for more than 75 percent of them, according to new data from the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center. How do the world's nations measure up? What's a nation's output come to per person? And just how big is a metric ton of CO2? Use an interactive dashboard to analyze CO2 emissions data.

Crime and Justice  
U.S. Corrections Population: One in Every 31 Adults


The latest federal data shows overall population growth is in decline. But how many people are in prison, jail or on probation in the U.S. and how much do we spend on them? Use an interactive stack graph to track the growth of the correctional population in recent decades.

New Data on How Older Americans Are Faring

Older_Americans_2010_Teaser.JPGNet-worth disparities among races and education levels, more older women in the labor force and a growing veteran population are among the highlights of a new government report on indicators of aging in the U.S.

Families and Children  
Report Highlights Indicators of Child Well-Being

Child_Stats_Teaser.jpgA new federal report on children in America includes some promising news on pre-term birth, teenage pregnancy and health care coverage. The report, which covers the health, activities, and general well-being of America's kids, found less promising statistics on child poverty and food security. Explore "America's Children in Brief" using an interactive reader.

What Education Data Do You Consider Key?

edchartsmall.JPGJoin in deciding how best to measure progress by weighing in on a draft set of indicators offered by the former U.S. commissioner for education statistics. Public participation is encouraged as part of the process of determining the key national indicators of education.

New Research Suggests Decline in Childhood Obesity


Researchers see positive results among students who did not participate in school health programs as well as those who did. An interactive bar chart provides before and after looks at students in the study of kids grades 6-8.

Safety and Security  
The State of Our Nuclear Stockpile

NukeStockpileTeaser.JPGThe Department of Defense recently disclosed the size and composition of of the U.S. nuclear arsenal for the first time. How do we measure up against other 'declared' nuclear states? Use an interactive stack graph to compare nuclear stockpiles over time.
Vizworld: 'One of the most beautiful' and clean Tableau visualizations I've seen'

Crime and Justice  
Breaking Down the Latest Increases in Identity Theft

idtheftsm.JPGIdentity theft is on the rise, with younger and wealthier households among the more likely victims. ID theft is on an initial short list of measurable items recommended to State of the USA for tracking crime and justice in the U.S.

Do Restaurant Smoking Bans Help Profits?

Foes of restaurant smoking bans may argue that they threaten profits, but a new study of how a Washington State ban has affected taxable sales in bars and taverns suggests the opposite. Is the experience of one state a predictor for others?

Crime and Justice  
What Crime and Justice Data Do You Consider Key?

jailtimesm.jpgIdentifying the most important measures of any issue requires an open dialogue that considers what the American people want to know and what experts consider most important for them to understand. Participate in shaping crime and justice coverage by weighing in on an draft set of measures compiled by a noted criminologist.

Economic Well-being: GDP vs. Median Income


Are median income measures better than GDP for gauging a nation's economic health? Draw your own conclusions with this visualization charting historical GDP and median income data.

Related: GDP Up 1.6 Percent for Second Quarter

Collaboration, Cooperation on a Global Scale


Take an in-depth look at the organizations measuring progress around the world. An interactive map highlights participants in the Global Project on Measuring the Progress of Societies.

Grandpa's Outnumbered: Generations and Populations

agepopthmb.gifHow have percentages of men vs. women in a given generation changed over time? And what unique factors might be in play from one 20th century generation to the next?

How Do U.S. Students Compare Internationally in Math?


With 45 percent of students at or above 'advanced' in math, Taiwan is among the top performing nations in the most recent international science and math assessments. The U.S. rate is 6. The next assessment takes place in the coming school year.

Related: International Science Achievement

International Scorecard: Are U.S. Kids Keeping Pace?


Should your middle schooler be brushing up on science during the summer break? Explore how U.S. fourth- and eighth-graders compare to their international peers with our interactive graphical scorecard. Tomorrow: Math.

Related: International Math Achievement

Want to Be Happy? Grow Up, Says New Study

agehappy.jpgHappiness comes with age -- age 50 to be exact -- according to a new report published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Times Article Sparks Reader Questions, Imagination

Curiosity and enthusiasm are evident in reader comments and other feedback following a New York Times Magazine piece highlighting the State of the USA's work.

Gender Gap: Same Degrees, Different Paychecks

Gender Gap Trendalyzer

How much is a bachelor's degree worth? It may depend on your gender. Use dual motion charts to track the percentage of young males and females with bachelor's degrees from 1980 to 2008 and compare results with annual earnings for both groups -- a small sample of Education and Economy content in the works for the upcoming beta site.

Florence Nightingale, Data Visualization Pioneer

nightingalesm.jpgState of the USA's editorial team experiments with various interactive data visualization techniques, and will enable users to do the same -- work that owes much to the legendary battlefield nurse and pie chart trailblazer born 190 years ago this spring. (With an audio salute to her wartime comrades circa 1854.)

Mind the Data Gaps: Calling Out What Isn't Known

Information gaps come to light when statisticians are asked to supply data for an important policy question not yet answered with hard facts. In other words, someone somewhere is faced with making critical decisions in a vacuum. Understanding the living arrangements of the nation's elderly is just one example.

NY Times Highlights State of the USA's Work, Mission

Magazine writer Jon Gertner explores the work of The State of the USA as part of a movement that seeks to redefine the way progress is measured, communicated and debated in the Unites States and other countries - with more evidence and less opinion.

Grassroots Efforts Tracking Progress Nationwide


How are cities, states and regions in the United States measuring progress? What is being measured and who is doing the measuring? An interactive map highlights indicator efforts across the U.S..

SUSA Goes Global for International Comparisons


State of the USA is participating with the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development to support the collection of quality international data on a wide range of issues.

Health Panel Created by Institute of Medicine in 2008

IOM_logo_green.jpgA panel of 14 experts selected by the Institute of Medicine provided guidance to the State of the USA on what to include in a focused set of 20 measures for tracking progress in the areas of health and health care.

Image: Institute of Medicine logo

Take the Federal Budget Tour

budget_teaser_icon.jpgHow much does the federal government spend, how is that money raised, where does it go and how has spending changed over time? A State of the USA tutorial.

Ex-Reagan Chief of Staff Backs Key Indicator Approach

On the eve of a new president's first address to Congress, Kenneth M. Duberstein, chief of staff from 1988 to 1989, called for a bipartisan effort to establish and make publicly available a comprehensive online database of key national indicators.

Enabling Discovery Through Interactivity, Context

newbubblethmb.gifThe State of the USA will offer a variety of interactive features and techniques to encourage exploration, such as this motion chart with audio tutorial focusing on health costs and outcomes for the developed world.

Interactive Tutorial: The Unemployment Rate

Tutorial: Understanding Employment and Labor Statistics

Just because you're out of work doesn't mean you're officially unemployed. How could that be? One example of an interactive tutorial on how statistics are developed and what they represent.

SUSA Credited as Part of International Movement

The statistics editor of London's Financial Times surveys efforts to understand the progress of societies through measurement, including the State of the USA, in a January 2009 column.

Health Measures for the Developed World

Health Measures for the developed worldExplore international health costs and outcomes for developed countries, comparing data in an animated chart.

Experts Explore Links Between Education, Economic Well-Being

LearnEarnthumb.JPGAlthough most economists agree that education packs a powerful economic punch, they disagree on what contributes to the payoff.

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