Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

United States of Obesity

This map (click on it to enlarge) should be a wake-up call for communities dealing with health indicators. You'll remember this map from an earlier post on the subject. The United States leads the world in obesity, and we can see concentrations in certain states (particularly in the American South.)

Here's what StrangeMaps had to say on the subject:

"Obesity, it may be useful to repeat, is not a euphemism for being overweight. It means being so fat that one’s health is affected. You are defined as obese if you have a body mass index of 30 or over (with a bmi of between 25 and 30, you are merely overweight). The US is the most overweight nation in the world, with over a quarter of the total population being obese. Obesity is a global phenomenon, however. It was recently reported that for the first time in history, there are now more overweight than malnourished people in the world."

Here's the earlier map we referred to:

How is your community using data and data display techniques to galvanize efforts in this area? Do you have indicators of adult or child obesity in your indicator sets?

(Hat tips: FrostFireZoo and StrangeMaps)


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