newborn baby sleeping

Against a backdrop of declining babies, Utah leads the nation in birth rates in 2017

April 20, 2018
When used in a demographic context, natural change refers to the answer to a basic population equation: births minus deaths. Of the 42 states who saw population growth in 2017, more than half of them (23) have natural change—not migration—to thank for the majority of their growth. The youthful states of California (+214,000), Texas (+210,000), and New York (+73,000) lead the nation in natural increase in the latest year. And Utah’s nation-leading birth rate helped it lay claim to the title of 3rd fastest growing state in 2017.
A group of pencils

Do schools reduce, replicate, or exacerbate inequality?

April 11, 2018
The answer to the question of whether school districts decrease, replicate, or increase inequality is “Yes.” Or, more precisely, it depends on which district you are talking about. New research reveals that third graders in districts with high average reading and math test scores will not necessarily see bigger (or smaller) gains by eighth grade than will third graders in lower-scoring districts. But even the most effective school districts are only able to help their third graders achieve one extra year of growth by eighth grade.
CBS Mid-morning show: Super Bowl Impressions survey

Media mentions

April 2, 2018
Explore media stories that contain insights and contributions from the APM Research Lab.

QUIZ: Data grab bag!

March 27, 2018
We grabbed data from three of our lab notes for a well-rounded, fun 3-question quiz! It’s brief, and you will likely come out with more knowledge than you came in with. Show us what you know!
Refugees arriving at the airport

Destination U.S.: Five facts about states’ international migrants in 2017

March 21, 2018
International migration is the most variable part of the equation for population change--as federal immigration policies and procedures, changing global economic conditions, and numerous other causes can dramatically change the flows of people into (and out of) the U.S. In 2017, front-runner state California gathered up 165,000 net international arrivals in 2017, ahead of Florida (+144,000), New York (+130,000), and Texas (+110,000). Not a single state saw more international arrivals in 2017 than in 2016, a reversal of otherwise climbing international migration figures over the decade, for nearly all states.
Two young women eyes covered

Delayed adulthood: The Millennial falsehood

March 14, 2018
Hi. I’m a Millennial. We need to talk. In 2016, 15 percent of Older Millennials were living with their parents. Should we see this as a delay in adulthood? I would argue, no. Older Millennials are haunted by the Great Recession, and many are pinned down by crippling debt. For many, the “decision” to live at home with parents instead of independently is the financially responsible and economically rational choice. The traditional norms that may have governed our idea of adulthood may be transitioning into something that more accurately reflects this generation.
gun firing

Who has a permit to carry a gun in public? And what are they thinking?

March 7, 2018
The tragic shooting at Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School has once again put gun policy on center stage in our national dialogue. Among the many and varied responses is a call to put more guns in the hands of trained school personnel, who might defend otherwise vulnerable students and school staff.
Man with suitcase

Migration magnetism: Five facts about 2017 state-to-state population movement

February 14, 2018
The flows of people across state boundaries—domestic migration—is of particular interest to a host of people: businesses feeling the pain of labor shortages, Census 2020 watchers wondering how Congressional seats will be reallocated, and even those for whom it’s a point of state pride. Netting 161,000 new residents from other states, Florida was the domestic migration champ in 2017. Second-place Texas had half as many domestic migrants (79,000). Next in line, North Carolina and Washington each acquired about 65,000 transplants in 2017, with Arizona just behind.
person in field

Male, Female, or Something Else?

February 8, 2018
Caitlyn Jenner. Bathroom bans and related boycotts. Amazon Prime’s Golden Globe winning Transparent series. President Trump’s (now overturned) order excluding transgendered individuals from the military. It is safe to say that questioning the traditional male-female gender binary is now part of our national dialogue. Other researchers and many of those working in public health are among those calling for more and better measurement of the nation’s gender diversity. Like other relatively small and difficult-to-estimate populations—those experiencing homelessness, some immigrant populations, the rare true geniuses that walk amongst us—getting some idea of the population size is but one step in helping to understand their unique needs and contributions.
feet on bus

Just over half of Minnesotans report personal financial progress over the decade

January 29, 2018
Underneath the headline indicators, we know there are numerous untold economic stories. When we designed the MPR News | APM Research Lab Ground Level Survey, we were especially curious about Minnesotans’ sense of their financial circumstances and whether they felt they had improved or deteriorated since 2007—just preceding the financial crisis and subsequent recession with its long tail. Many of those north of the poverty line still fear they are in precarious financial straits.
Good news

Improving the news--and building democracy--in 2018 (and beyond)

January 25, 2018
It has been a little disheartening to see the recent spate of reports on mistrust in the news media. How can we rebuild trust in America's essential fourth estate? I suspect that some combination of listening to others, presenting solidly-researched information, and being as transparent as possible will help. And that is just what we've been doing in our first major project: the Ground Level Survey with Minnesota Public Radio News.

QUIZ: Is Minnesota on the right or wrong track?

January 24, 2018
In the MPR News | APM Research Lab Ground Level Survey, we asked Minnesotans whether they thought Minnesota was on the right or wrong track for nine issue areas: from education to health care to immigration and more. Take our 5-question quiz to see if you know what your neighbors said—and whether you agree with them!
Water in a glass

Minnesotans: United on water, divided on immigration

January 16, 2018
If Minnesota competed in a pageant, it might take the “Optimism” crown—if that were even a thing. The Ground Level Survey that we recently completed with Minnesota Public Radio News found that 82 percent of Minnesotans feel hopeful about the state’s future. What’s more, most Minnesotans feel the state is on the right track on an array of issues. At the high end of agreement, 85 percent of Minnesotans feel the state is on the right track when it comes to “providing safe drinking water,” followed closely by “protecting lakes and rivers for things like swimming, boating, and fishing” at 80 percent.
Turn lane in disrepair

Do more Minnesotans want lower taxes, or services that require taxes?

January 3, 2018
“I don’t know off the top of my head. Lowering taxes.” That was one response to the broadest open-ended question on the recent MPR News | APM Research Lab Ground Level Survey. The question was about change. It asked: “If there is ONE thing that you would like to see changed in Minnesota to improve our state, what would that be?” But “lower my taxes” strikes me as a simplification. While reading through all of the responses, I was taken by how many people wanted a change that would require taxes.

Happy Holidays from the APM Research Lab!

December 20, 2017
This holiday season Andi, Kassira, and I are feeling grateful to the collaboration and support we have received in the Lab’s first half year of existence. We’ve benefited from the wise counsel of many formal and informal advisers. To close out the year, try your hand at our first quiz.
Two women speaking in a cafe

In the U.S., language diversity covers the map

December 13, 2017
Did you know that 17,000 residents of Tennesseans speak Arabic? And 177,000 residents of Illinois converse in Polish? Just as glaciers transformed our nation’s physical landscape thousands of years ago, the immigration patterns of the past three centuries—right up to the present—have left their mark on the varied linguistic patterns across the United States.
Preschooler with crayons

Data Literacy 101: Did enrollment drop in Rhode Island’s private preschools?

December 8, 2017
Of all Rhode Island children enrolled in preschool, the percent in private settings dropped five percentage points between 2015 and 2016. Or did it? When a change is “statistically significant,” we can be reasonably confident that the change is real. We use statistics to help us understand an entire population from a sample. Think of a pot of chicken noodle soup. Assuming the pot is well-stirred, you can make a pretty good estimate based on one ladle of soup.