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Minnesota Compass

Project ID: 409

CIC Case Study: Promising Practices supporting Community Health Assessment

CIC Member?:
Active Project?:
Year Project Began:
Year of Latest Report:
Last Update: 08/18/17
Project LocationMinnesota
Lead OrganizationWilder Research
Type of OrganizationNonprofit - Research

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Geographic Scope (The level of geography at which the indicator data is collected):
Subneighborhood, Neighborhood, Municipality, County, Metropolitan, Multi-County, Sub-State Region, State/Province, National

Issue Areas:
Children/Youth/Families, Economy, Education, Employment, Environment, Equity, Governance, Health, Housing, Land Use, Population, Poverty, Public Safety, Transportation, Volunteerism


Project Description

Minnesota Compass measures progress and inspires action to keep quality of life high in regions and communities throughout our state. It tracks trends and provides analysis, community commentary and strategies for tackling an issue. The initiative measures indicators across a variety of domains, including aging, civic engagement, early childhood, economy and workforce, education, environment, health, housing, immigration, public safety, and transportation. It also provides an extensive demographic information and highlights the issue of disparities, identified as a major threat to the well-being of our state. In addition, Compass tracks long-range trends and provides analysis, community commentary and strategies for tackling an issue. Compass is funded and governed by a consortium of foundations across the state and is led by Wilder Research, a division of the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation in Saint Paul.

Practices Relevant to Community Health Assessment

Promising Practices (definitions):

  • Innovative Tools
    Data portal: The Minnesota Compass data portal provides a rich set of information and data for exploration, including a library, "what works", and other useful resources.

Minnesota Compass is supported by a consortium of foundations based in Minnesota.

Social Determinants:
Does project address Social Determinants of Health? Yes

Health Connection

Local Health Department(s) involvement? Supporting

What framework does this project use if any?

Awards and Recognitions: 2012 Community Indicators Consortium Impact Award

Achievements: Book chapter: Craig Helmstetter, Paul Mattessich, Andi Egbert, Susan Brower, Nancy Hartzler, Jennifer Franklin, and Bryan Lloyd. 2011. “Twin Cities Compass: Doing Well by Doing Good.” Chapter in Community quality-of-life indicators: Best cases V. Joseph Sirgy, Rhonda Pillips, and Don Rahtz, eds. New York: Springer.

Community Indicators – Performance Measures Integration

Does this project have Community Indicators?: Yes
Minnesota Compass focuses on 2-4 Key Measures in each of several topic areas. When possible, key measures are trended and compared with the nation, as well as other states. The Minneapolis-Saint Paul metro is compared with the nation's 25 larges metros. Additionally, when data allow, key measures are broken down to included comparisons by region within the state, county, and city, as well as several demographic characteristics (age, race/ethnicity, gender, household type).

Does this project have Performance Measures?: No

Has this project integrated Community Indicators and Performance Measures?: No

Contact Information

Craig Helmstetter
Wilder Research
451 Lexington Parkway North
St Paul, MN 55104
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