Data Is Plural

... is a weekly newsletter of useful/curious datasets.

2017.11.01 edition

Federal court cases, high-profile sexual assault timelines, Deepwater Horizon’s effects, county-level cardiovascular deaths, and chimp personalities.

Federal court cases. The U.S. Federal Judicial Center’s “Integrated Data Base” contains a longitudinal record of all federal criminal, civil, and appellate court cases going back to the 1970s, as well as bankruptcy cases going back to late 2007. Each dataset contains dozens of detailed fields — including each case’s jurisdiction, name, docket number, relevant legal statutes, and more — accompanied by explanatory codebooks. You can download single-year snapshots and cumulative files, or interactively select specific slices of data to export. Related: “How the Bankruptcy System Is Failing Black Americans,” an investigation by ProPublica that used the IDB’s data on bankruptcy cases for its analysis.

High-profile sexual assault timelines. Rebecca Zisser and Lazaro Gamio at Axios have compiled a timeline of alleged sexual assaults by Harvey Weinstein, Bill O’Reilly, Roger Ailes, Donald Trump, and Bill Cosby. For each of the 140+ cases recorded as of Oct. 20, the timeline indicates the year of the assault, the year the victim came forward (if they did), and the year of any legal settlement (if there was one). The underlying data is available as a spreadsheet. [h/t Mike Allen]

Deepwater Horizon’s effects. For years, the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration has been working to assess the damage done to natural resources by the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil spill. As part of that effort, they’ve collected and compiled several dozen related datasets, including toxicity studies, plankton samples, necropsies of stranded turtles, dolphin health assessments, and a “backyard boater” survey. [h/t Sebastian Kraus]

County-level cardiovascular deaths. Researchers at the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation to estimated cardiovascular mortality rates for each U.S. county, for every year between 1980 and 2014. The findings, based on 32 million de-identified death records, population data from the Census, and other sources, are also broken down by particular disease (e.g., aortic aneurysm, ischemic stroke, etc.) and gender. Related: The researchers’ JAMA article describing their methodology and findings. Previously: The Global Burden of Disease dataset, published by the same institute (DIP 2016.07.27). [h/t Michael A. Rice, a teacher at Ingraham High School in Seattle]

Chimp personalities. “Jane Goodall drew the attention of a global audience with vivid depictions of the personalities of eastern chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) at Gombe National Park, yet only one attempt [in 1973] has been made to quantify these personality traits systematically,” writes a team of researchers in the latest issue of Scientific Data. To remedy the situation, the researchers paid field observers to score 128 Gombe chimpanzees on 24 personality traits — “dominant,” “excitable,” “helpful,” “sensitive,” and more — on a seven-point scale.