The data request we are about to discuss is real. The names have been changed to protect the innocent.
Data Request I was calling in regards to a story Im doing looking at the median household income in Cabarrus/Rowan Counties by race and ethnicity, as well as how Black and Hispanic income compares to White income. I had a couple of specific questions for you as well as wanted to touch base with you on any general impressions Hope you dont mind, Im attaching a spreadsheet with some numbers that Ive been looking at. Could you please give me a call. - Joe Tattler, Daily News
Just the Facts See the Numbers - Take a look at the initial information Consider the Question - Determine what data is really needed The Usual Suspects - Census data (decennial or other) - State Government data - Local experts
The Initial Evidence Cabarruss median hhld income is significantly higher than Rowans. Percent change in both Black and Hispanic median hhld income was roughly 3 times higher in Cabarrus County than Rowan County. The gap between Black and White median hhld income in Cabarrus County narrowed but was flat in Rowan County Median hhld income gap was/is more narrow in Rowan County. Hispanic median hhld income as a percent of White median hhld income increased in both counties.
What Does It All Mean? What does that tell you about these two counties? - Joe Tattler, Daily News Whats driving these numbers? - Joe Tattler, Daily News
Census Data Locating the Information Hideouts NC Census Lookup http://census.state.nc.us/lookup American FactFinder http://factfinder.census.gov
Census Data Profiles Viewing the Data Line-up Summary File 1 -100% data -Pop. and housing -Block coverage Summary File 3 -Sample data -Socio-economic -Tract coverage
Census Data Profiles Changing Appearances 1990 STF3 Profile 2000 SF3 Profile
Census Data Profiles Seeing Through the Disguise STF/SF name change is due to release format There have been significant changes in census content and concepts from 1990 to 2000. - Race categories are NOT comparable - Grandparents as caregivers is a new item Changes in content and concepts have led to changes in profile appearance. - 29-page profile from 1990 STF3 - 58-page profile from 2000 SF3
Other Census Data Sources The Accomplices County Business Patterns Economic Census Current Population Survey American Community Survey Other US Dept of Commerce Sources - Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) Regional Economic Information System (REIS)
The data business was big. Maybe too big. I needed new information and a way to accurately compare trend data. I began investigating local leads.
State Resources NC Department of Commerce http://www.nccommerce.com Economic Development Information System (EDIS) Economic Development Scans Industry Profiles State Comparisons
State Resources NC State Data Center Census Information census.state.nc.us Log Into North Carolina (LINC) linc.state.nc.us
Making the Call I contacted Joe Tattler at the Daily News, and I told him what Id found. I was expecting more questions. I was in for a surprise.
Experts in the Field SDC Affiliate Network SDC affiliates provide statewide coverage At least 2 affiliates for each county Local experts Public Library and Lead Regional Organizations State Library of North Carolina Locate affiliates by County sdc.state.nc.us
Closing the Case Summary Census source data and concepts Other US Dept. of Commerce sources State Data Center web and affiliate resources NC Dept. of Commerce resources
It felt good to close this case, but there would be others. Soon the phone would ring, but right now there was coffee.