Increasing Transparency and Coordination through Better Data Access
The IndyVitals tool was conceived as a means to measure the long-term health and sustainability of neighborhoods. A second goal was to help organizations by making comparative neighborhood-level data transparent. The true power of IndyVitals is its ability to coordinate actions of community partners by highlighting the strengths and challenges of diverse neighborhoods in Indianapolis.
As data can be very complex, IndyVitals offers a range of approaches to tell the story for each neighborhood area. Polis transforms raw, messy data from many administrative sources into a simple one-page dashboard that quickly tells residents and leaders how a neighborhood area has changed and how it compares to other areas or the metro. For those who want to dive deeper, such as policy analysts and decision-makers, the tool provides charts and maps that describe trends, comparisons, and disparities by race, age, income, and education levels.
For organizations involved in quality-of-life, social services, and economic development programming, the tool provides a common geographical approach that tells a single story. It helps measure progress and the success of efforts. It identifies a neighborhood’s greatest strengths and gaps in services, and targets the people and assets that can efficiently and effectively transform negatives into positives. The expectation is that multiple agencies will read the same story, resulting in greater synergy in making Indianapolis a great place to live and work.
IndyVitals was created for Plan 2020, a planning initiative led by the Greater Indianapolis Progress Committee and the City of Indianapolis Department of Metropolitan Development, with funding from a US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) grant. IndyVitals is one of the four main elements of the city’s bicentennial plan.
In 2017, IndyVitals was the recipient of a prestigious national award for improving the delivery and quality of government services. The Urban and Regional Information System Association (URISA), a multi-disciplinary geospatial organization that fosters excellence in geographic information systems (GIS), recognized IndyVitals with the Exemplary Systems in Government Award.
For more information, contact Sharon Kandris.