Mission Driven Credit Analysis

Posted by on Aug 20, 2017 in Current Projects | 0 comments

We’re excited to announce the first of our next round of social data projects.

Mission Driven Finance is a San Diego impact investment fund that provides loans to nonprofits, social enterprises, and businesses that benefit the San Diego community.  MDF is interested in helping businesses understand the regional lending landscape and advocating for improvements to make it easier for businesses that have a hard time getting financing to be able to get the money they need to grow.

This project will explore:

  • Characterizing the state of small and medium business (SMB) lending in SD County.
  • Visualizing regions of the county by Credit Score, similar to this map.
  • Demographic analysis of SMB lending

We will be collecting data related to businesses, demographics and lending and creating some datasets and visualizations.

We will probably start project meetings in October, but may get started with wrangling data before then.  More details about the project are in the project wiki and the Initial Questions document, and visit Meetup.com to register for the kickoff meeting

Here is a map that is the inspiration for the project; we’d like to produce something similar for San Diego:



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Pro Bono Data Analysis This Summer

Posted by on Apr 4, 2017 in Analysis, News, Projects | 0 comments

Disadvantaged Student Performance

For Summer of 2017, The San Diego Regional Data Library will be running a data internship program, working on pro-bono data analysis projects for nonprofits, governments and journalists in San Diego County. If your organization has questions that can be answered with data, you can have an undergraduate data analyst work on your project, with professional guidance, for up to 12 weeks.

Project sponsors must be able to describe their needs as a set of questions that can be answered with available data, and must be able to meet with the interns at their site for 1 hour per week. Projects must have a social goal or benefit.

We’re currently running two projects, and expect to be running three or four more this summer.

If your organization needs data analysis this summer, please contact the Data Library Director, Eric Busboom at (619) 363-2607 or eric@sandiegodata.org.

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Age-Friendly Communities

Posted by on Dec 12, 2016 in Old Projects | 0 comments

Project Management Site

Consumer Advocates for RCFE Reform (CARR) works to improve the quality of  residential care facilities for the elderly (RCFE)  by making public RCFE records and reports easier to find, search and understand. This recent article in Senior Housing and Care Journal provides an excellent introduction to the data issues involved in reviewing these facilities, as does CARR’s final report to the county for the rating system pilot program.

For this data project, we will be collecting data to analyze the capacity and affordability of San Diego’s assisted living industry, considering the anticipated need for these services over the next 30 years.  The goal is to to identify those communities in San Diego experiencing the greatest difficulty finding and affording assisted living care services. 

This project will use regional Census data, San Diego’s 211 intake records, SANDAG data, and data from California’s Departments of Health Care Services and Social Services. The analysis from the project will reveal the ability of those 65 and over to afford lifetime average assisted living expenditures of $4,000/month for three years.   Of particular interest for this program would be identifying communities with high concentrations of low-income seniors and the availability (or lack thereof) of Assisted Living Medicaid Waiver Program (ALWP) beds within the immediate community.

A good place to start for data is the County’s Aging and Independence Services website, but in the kick off meeting will will identify many other sources of data that we should consider and analyze.

Joining The Project

If you’d like to join the project, see the list of items under “Joining a Project”  on the main project list page.

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Age Friendly Communities Project

Posted by on Dec 12, 2016 in Projects | 0 comments

At tomorrow night’s meeting, we’ll be kicking off two new data projects. The first is the Health Food Access project, previously announced, and the second is the Age Friendly Communities project, for which we’ve just posted the project page. In this project we will be collecting data to analyze the capacity and affordability of San Diego’s assisted living industry, considering the anticipated need for these services over the next 30 years. Hope you can join us. 

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Wrangling Data For Social Projects

Posted by on Dec 6, 2016 in Projects | 0 comments

Next week we’ll be kicking off two new data projects, and a big part of these projects will be finding data, documenting it, and preparing it in a consistent way for analysis, a process known as data wrangling. I’ve been developing software for wrangling social data for a few years, and have collected many of the best ideas into a new metadata system called Metatab. Metatab is a system for storing structured metadata in a CSV file, often alongside data, making it easier to create  and publish metadata.

In the next two data projects, we will using the Metatab Google Spreadsheet Add-On to document data we locate for the two projects. Once a metatab specification is created for a dataset, it can be uploaded to CKAN, our data repository software directly from the Google spreadsheet system. And I’m currently working on other tools for finding and manipulating data.

When we are done with the main data wrangling, there will be collections of datasets in our main data repository  related to food access and assisted living, and then we can start on data analysis, most likely using Pandas and Tableau, but we may also tackled using a few AWS tools like AWS Athena and AWS Quicksight.

Register for the Meeting


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Healthy Food Access Data Library Project

Posted by on Aug 16, 2016 in Projects | 0 comments

Collect and analyze data about the food system in San Diego county.

The San Diego Food System Alliance’s Healthy Food Access Working Group is developing an indicator library to analyze food access issues, and we need your help to locate datasets, wrangle them into useable shape, and create visualizations.

The work is similar to the topics of our March 2015 Data Contest, with additional work of building a reusable data library to perform additional analysis.

This project needs volunteers with a range of skills, including:

  • Administration and logistics: Call potential data providers, locate datasets, and arrange meetings and events.
  • Data wranglers: People skilled with either Excel or Python to manipulate datasets.
  • Data analysts: Data analysis who know R or Python/Pandas.

We will be starting with a list of potential datasets, from which we will construct Ambry Data Bundles. We can load the bundles into a data library. Then we can do visualizations and analysis, such as this map from a project at Palomar College.

How To Participate

To participate in this project, join the practical data program, then join the project mailing list by selecting the “Food Access” list under the “List Memberships” section of your profile page.

Team meetings will be posted to our Meetup.com site,  the Practical Data Program site, and our Practical Data Program mailing lists. We’ll have our first meetings to get started in late August.

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