Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Getting to Know the Data

This last week at my internship, I was given the opportunity to work more closely with data collection for our grants. The biannual report deadline is coming soon, so it is crunch time for getting all of our data compiled and analyzed. CRI’s re-entry grant collects data from 148 different clients, throughout Southern Indiana. The interviews we administer take on a holistic approach, and examine several different factors.

My project this week was to determine if each of our clients lived in an urban or a rural community. To determine this, all I had to do was type their home address into the USDA’s online Rural Eligibility generator. This generator maps the home location, and determines if the location fits any of the USDA’s three definitions of a rural community. After I found if the location was urban or rural, I entered it into our computer statistical program (SPSS). The results were extremely interesting to me: 31.7% of clients live in a rural location, and 68.3% live in a metropolitan location.

As I have mentioned before, sociological reasons for crime fascinate me. This data got the gears in my head turning. What exactly about a rural location decreases criminal activity? Does it have to do with less access to criminal opportunities? Socioeconomic status? Limited mobility? Or is it merely to do with population density?

Posted by Anne

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