Welcome To

Minnesota Compass

By tracking and analyzing trends in areas that affect our quality of life, Compass gives everyone in our state – policymakers, business and community leaders, and concerned individuals who live and work here – a common foundation to act on issues to improve our communities. More >



Build custom profiles for Duluth, Minneapolis, and Saint Paul

You told us you would like to create profiles for your geographic area of interest – such as a cluster of neighborhoods, or a specified area around an intersection or corridor. Now you can with our new interactive mapping tool.


Minneapolis and Saint Paul


Minneapolis-Saint Paul neighborhood profiles gallery

Arts for youth, a fact sheet for policy-makers, and a bread oven: Find these and other stories about how data users are having an impact.

New data

Thirty-five percent of Minnesota residents (age 16+) volunteer.

Our state ranks 4th in the nation for the greatest share of residents who volunteer.

Among large metros, the Twin Cities metro area ranks 2nd for volunteerism.

One-third of Minnesota volunteers log most of their volunteer hours for religious organizations.

The most common activities among Minnesota volunteers are collecting/preparing/distributing food, and fundraising.

Of the state's 96 major cities, the cities with the highest and lowest proportions of adults working are in the Southern region: North Mankato (86%) and Faribault (65%).

Across Minnesota counties, between 18 and 36 percent of households pay one third or more of their income for housing.

Mahnomen has the state’s highest share of children under age 6 below the poverty level (45%) while Carver has the lowest (5%).

Among Minneapolis-Saint Paul residents of all ages, the rate of disability is lowest for Asian and Hispanic people.


Craig Helmstetter

Compass Project Director Craig Helmstetter uses a humanities-based framework developed by Thriving Cities, to look at the well-being of the greater Minneapolis and Saint Paul area.

Featured trend

volunteer trend map

Volunteerism slips, but still ranks near the top

While Minnesota’s overall volunteer rate (age 16+) has fallen over the past decade, we still rank high -- #4 in the nation. About 1 in 3 white adults,1 in 4 black adults, and 1 in 5 Asian adults volunteer. The venue with the largest amount of volunteers’ hours? Religious organizations

View topic: Civic Engagement

Minnesota Compass

Minnesota Compass
Led by Wilder Research

© 2016. All rights reserved.