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.

Each source listed below contains a brief description of the type of data and topics available, an overview that offers additional details, and a step-by-step guide to getting started. The Overview allows for a quick comparison between the various data sources so that users may choose an optimal source for their research or inquiry. The Getting Started Tutorial provides screenshot navigation when accessing the home page, entering information into fields, and an example output for each data source. 

The Data Source Catalog will be continually updated, and new sources will be added as they are made available. If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions for the Violence Data Landscape, please contact Megan Larson at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Browse data sources by topic: Glossary

 500 Cities Project 

Provides small area estimates for chronic disease risk factors, health outcomes, and clinical preventive service use for the largest 500 cities in the U.S. Interactive maps allow users to explore the geographic distribution of health-related variables in their community. 

Illinois Poverty Report

Annual report with county-level poverty and well-being data. Allows users to understand poverty in their communities and use the data to gain insights into specific populations and learn about poverty-related issues.

Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System

Self-report surveys of adult health risk factors including: health care access/coverage, substance use, and chronic health indicators. Data can be sorted by state and demographics. Illinois data collected in 2013.

Illinois State Police Uniform Crime Reports

Access annual reports and datasets on topics that include: index crimes, crime rates, hate crimes, domestic offenses, and school incidents on state- and county-wide levels and by police department.

Chicago Health Atlas

Explore and compare health-related data over time and across Chicago community areas. Data indicators include social and economic factors, environment, and health care quality. Users may review this data to identify opportunities to improve health and well-being in Chicago.


Illinois Violent Death Reporting System

Part of the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS), which pools information from multiple sources (primarily death certificate, coroner/medical examiner, and law enforcement data) about the “who, when, where, and how” of violent deaths.

Child Health Data Lab, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago

CHDL performs epidemiological research to identify risks to healthy youth development and to evaluate programs to strengthen youth-serving organizations.

Illinois Youth Survey

Self-report survey administered in school settings and designed to gather information about a variety of health and social risk factors. Survey content includes questions about demographic information, activity participation, substance use/perceptions, home environment, safety, school experiences, and nutrition/exercise.

Chicago Public Schools

School progress report cards that provide information on schools’ academic performance, school culture and climate, overall performance rating, and student demographics for each Chicago Public School.


Interactive map of Chicago displaying facilities, transit routes, political boundaries, street closures, TIF districts, liquor licenses and other data of general interest.

City of Chicago Data Portal

City datasets include Chicago crime, food inspections, 311 service requests, city boundaries, and performance metrics. Categories include public safety, community & economic development, and health services.

National Neighborhood Indicators Project

Biannual report that provides summary information on the local neighborhood-level data that partners hold (partners serve as local data intermediaries). Summary reports include the following characteristics: data sources, geographic level, record type, most recent year of data, and number of years of data.

Chicago Police Department - CLEARMAP

Allows users to search for maps and tables of reported community concerns (categorized by type of crime). Provides summaries by beat, district, ward, community area, and census tract.


Open source platform that allows users to learn more about their communities based on the queries they enter. Users can build datasets that encompass real-time or historical events (i.e. crimes, graffiti removal, alley lights out, and potholes).

Diversity Data Kids

Users may explore measures of child well-being and policy analysis with interactive visualizations. This data source documents diversity, opportunity, and equity among US children


User-friendly online mapping with demographic, health, and employment data. Users can create data tables, maps, and reports. Sign up to access the complete data warehouse and PolicyMap’s full analytical abilities.

Easy access to Juvenile Populations

Access national, state, and county level population data and create detailed population profiles for single jurisdictions or compare across states and counties

United States Census Bureau American Community Survey

Survey that collects information on employment, educational attainment, veteran status, etc. Data is collected on an ongoing basis and findings are relayed in the form of estimates, tables, tools, and analytical reports. Users may also request a custom tabulation.

Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority Research & Analysis Unit

Clearinghouse of criminal justice and risk factor datasets collected by other state agencies. Access the most current available data, including associated rates that are calculated with census data and county-level estimates.

United States Census Bureau American FactFinder

Users may build datasets and review information based on: topics of interest (including demographics, healthcare coverage, education, employment, etc), geographies, race and ethnic groups, industry codes, and EEO occupation codes.

Illinois Domestic Violence and Information Clearinghouse

Links to multiple domestic-violence data sources and annual reports on domestic violence perpetrators and court cases in the state of Illinois.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention WISQARS

Database that provides fatal and nonfatal injury (including assault, sexual assault, legal intervention and self-harm), violent death, and cost of injury data from a variety sources.

Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System

National, state, and local Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (YRBSS) middle and high school survey data from 1991 – 2013. Topics include behaviors that contribute to unintentional injuries, violence, alcohol/drug use, sexual risk behaviors, and additional health-risk behaviors.