Fourth Economy is a Pittsburgh based economic and community development consultancy. The firm grew alongside’s Pittsburgh’s economic recovery, and since expanded to other local markets. Fourth Economy recently published the Community Index dashboard to track the following indicators:

  • Investment
  • Talent
  • Sustainability
  • Place
  • Diversity

The Index provides a relative ranking among counties based on their population size. The dashboard is in Beta, so there is not specific quantities associated with each indicator.

The Index explores 1,837 of 3,007 counties in the United States with a population of 20,000 or more.

As a consultancy, Fourth Economy helps clients apply for community and economic development grants. Their index can also be used by applicants as an awareness building tool within their communities.

As an Index of Community health, the dashboard combines data that can be inherently challenging for local economic and community developers to parse. For example, investment and diversity can compete with one another as investment into local infrastructure displaces or gentrifies neighborhoods.

The identified indicators offer a comprehensive sense of the well-being of a region’s economic and community development without failing to address the needs of under-represented groups.