Introducing: The 2013 Data Sampler

Just last month we rolled out our latest publication, the 2013 SCOPE Data Sampler. Inspired by a Whitman’s Sampler of assorted chocolates, the Data Sampler includes tasty sample sized bites of local community data in Sarasota County. Sink your teeth into these maps that display data from each of the nine domains of well-being.

You might be wondering, what can a Data Sampler really do for you and your community? Well, if you read the SCOPE blog post about story mapping, you might already know that maps enable us to tell a story about our community by creating a visual representation of data that is accessible for residents and community members to engage with.

Sweet treats: Table of Contents

So, click on this link and download a 2013 Data Sampler. Check out the box of chocolates (table of contents) and pick your favorite flavor of data first! As you look at the maps, orient yourself using US-41, I-75, and the water. Can you find your neighborhood in these maps? Read the description to get a sense of what the map is all about. And remember, the Data Sampler is really just a taste of the possibilities. What data is missing from the Data Sampler? What data do you think your community would benefit from?

To give you a sense of the Data Sampler’s contents, here are a couple of highlights. The first map, titled Watershed, is a map of impervious surface percentages by neighborhood. Impervious surfaces are any surface that water cannot penetrate through, which then just runs over the land as stormwater runoff. Stormwater runoff then picks up pollutants on its path to our waterways. Ironically, one of the densest areas of impervious surface percentage is in the neighborhoods closer to the waterways. This is because Sarasota County’s bays and freshwater water bodies are valued greatly by residents and thus, the development is highest in these areas. Does your neighborhood have a high or low percentage of impervious surface area?

In the Reading map, the area of Sarasota County is composed of multicolored polygons which represent the percent of 3rd graders scoring 3 or above on the FCAT reading by school attendance zone. Each Sarasota County library is represented by a pie chart that shows the percentages of types of circulating materials. This map is not intended to show a direct relationship between libraries and FCAT reading scores; instead it paints a picture of reading and literacy in Sarasota County. What other data would be useful to see in conjunction with the FCAT scores or types of circulating materials?

Go ahead and take a gander at this data treat and let us know your favorite flavor in the comments.