Woodstock Institute has created data tools that provide insight into the economic well-being of neighborhoods in Chicago and Illinois. An interactive map allows users to research and understand geographic patterns of foreclosures, mortgage lending, employment, income, and vacancy across the state. A data compendium allows the public to explore than 100 Chicago region datasets on topics ranging from economic development to health services.
For example, one of the richest datasets we have is the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) dataset, which has information on nearly every mortgage application in Illinois. This data empowered us to detect and demonstrate disparities in mortgage lending, which perpetuates the racial wealth gap.
Woodstock Institute has a proud history of standing up against financial injustice and supporting lower-wealth communities and marginalized consumers. The interactive map highlights some of the economic disparities in Illinois. For example, Cook County has one of the higher median incomes, but it also has one of the highest poverty levels at 9.6 percent. The map allows users to further track income inequality trends at the census tract level.