A powerful visual platform, connected right into the bloodstream of some the most important democratic locus of change in the US - communities.

Using Data and Collaboration to Improve Social Equity and Climate Justice 

How to Use GEM

The GEM Platform is meant to be used in conjunction with the Process Guide giving you the ability to evaluate current data on the equity landscape, collaborate on data analysis, and build more aligned, effective relationships within your community. If you're a policymaker, the maps will help inform where you are more likely to provide substantial equity benefits in policy efforts. If you're a community-based leader or organization, the maps will give you honest data about inequities in your neighborhood which could serve to repair or strengthen existing relationships with key decision-makers.

Equity Indicators in GEM


GEM provides over 35 indicators to choose from related to demographics, energy, housing, health, transportation, technology, and more. Selection of indicators to be displayed on the map varies depending on your policy or interest-based needs. A brief description of each indicator is listed below:


*American Community Survey (ACS): This product uses the Census Bureau Data API but is not endorsed or certified by the Census Bureau.

Center for Disease Control (CDC): Materials developed by CDC, Reference to specific commercial products, manufacturers, companies, or trademarks does not constitute its endorsement or recommendation by the U.S. Government, Department of Health and Human Services, or Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/other/agencymaterials.html


Eviction Lab, Princeton University, www.evictionlab.org

Ipums: Steven Ruggles, Sarah Flood, Ronald Goeken, Josiah Grover, Erin Meyer, Jose Pacas and Matthew Sobek. IPUMS USA: Version 10.0 [dataset]. Minneapolis, MN: IPUMS, 2020. https://doi.org/10.18128/D010.V10.0

GEM Platform Features

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Search Bar

  • Search for the neighborhood, ZIP code, city, county, state, or census tract number you would like to view. Hover on an individual census tract to select it and see specific data points about that area.

Selecting an Equity Indicator 

  • Select an equity indicator from the drop-down list to view on the map. The indicator will be displayed by census tract. Hover on an individual census tract to see specific data points about that area. 


  • The platform allows you to filter the data to focus the attention on the desired populations to identify where there are higher levels of inequity for a selected indicator. 

  • Use the slider to create a focus on specific population segments. Setting the slider to 0% shows the chosen indicator data for all neighborhoods, while setting the slider to 75% only shows census tracts that experience the highest 25% of the chosen equity indicator.  For example, selecting asthma as an indicator and setting the slider to 75% will only show you census tracts that experience the top 25% of asthma rates.


  • The tool allows you to explore the relationship between two equity indicators by layering the data of each indicator. To see two equity indicators layered over each other, select a second indicator from the bottom drop down menu. The diamond legend in the right hand corner allows you to see how these indicators interact with one another.

  • In the example below, the first indicator chosen from the drop down menu is housing burden. The second is asthma rates. The more vibrant colors mean higher rates of the chosen indicators. 


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Downloading Data

  • Download your map as a PNG file for easy sharing or as a CSV file for further analysis of the full dataset!

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