Information and Community Change: The National Neighborhoods Indicator Partnership Luncheon Keynote
The potential for strategic analysis of neighborhood change is being transformed. The broader revolution in information technology has made it possible to assemble and manipulate enormous amounts of neighborhood level data at dramatically reduced costs. But it doesn’t happen automatically. The most valuable information is generated locally and new local institutions are needed to assure that the data will be brought together systematically and used productively. This is the role now being played by data intermediaries in 35 cities that are a part of the National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership (NNIP), a network coordinated by the Urban Institute. This presentation explains how NNIP partners work at the local level. What kinds of institutions get involved and why? What is the range of data they maintain in their systems, and how do they convince local government agencies to share it with them? How do they function as a one-stop-shop for data? How do they go about getting the data applied effectively for policy making, program planning, and community building? To illustrate the work, the presentation covers applications in one area in some depth: helping local stakeholders design data driven responses to the foreclosure crisis (foreclosure prevention and neighborhood stabilization). This will clearly be a topic of importance in understanding crime trends in urban neighborhoods over the next few years. The presentation also includes a section on the kinds of work NNIP does nationally as a partnership.