Over the course of the Violence Data Landscape (VDL) project, SCY worked to engage interested individuals and organizations in the VDL work and continued to foster the learning environment established during the VDL’s formative phase. In that phase, four broad categories of data users were identified: researchers, agencies, media and the public. To understand these data users and their needs, staff conducted semi-structured interviews with 2-3 key informants from each of these categories.

The Violence Data Landscape is funded in part by The Joyce Foundation.

Chicago has more homicides than any other city in the US, but an imperfect data environment to support and monitor coordinated, data-driven violence prevention strategies. The Chicago Police Department and other City agencies provide the public with online access to a tremendous amount of data, but use can be difficult and data accuracy has been questioned. Criminal justice data from Cook County and Illinois are much harder to access. Health data at all levels of government are subject to extensive protections.

As part of the VDL initiative, this catalog provides immediate access to available online data resources that can be used in violence-related research. Topics include crime incidence, youth risk behaviors, community concerns, violent deaths by location, program evaluations, academic performance by school, census data, and additional areas of interest. Users can also find information based on community area, police district, zip code, neighborhood, census tract, police beat, census block, ward, municipality, congressional district and other various designated boundaries. Lastly, users may download data in the form of reports, Excel/CSV files, GIS zip files, and customized tables based on their queries.