Research & Data

Meet the Community Development Research Team

The Community Development Research team is a unit of sociologists, economists, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) specialists, data scientists, and qualitative researchers. In 2019, we completed a strategic planning effort and developed the following mission, vision, and values as a guiding framework for our work, and how we do it. Put simply, we believe research can improve the lives of residents in our region.


Metropolitan Council’s Community Development Research Team advances a better Twin Cities region for all by delivering trusted, useful information.


We envision equitable policy, planning, service, and investment decisions at the regional and local level that result in tangible benefits and opportunities for all residents of our region. We see our skills, creativity, and platforms as resources to further shared understanding about regional issues that matter.




We value the perspectives and expertise of all people in our region. We actively seek opportunities for collaboration within our team and with others—in and outside the Council—with an intentional goal of building authentic partnerships.


We carry out our work with integrity and tenacity. We produce high-quality, reliable, action-oriented information and products. We reflect on our methods, tools, and processes, leveraging what we learn to continuously improve.


Our work requires constant learning, innovation, and exploration. We challenge assumptions, including our own, and pursue the knowledge and skills required to answer big, complex questions as holistically as possible.


We embrace the limitations of our expertise and commit to a deeper understanding through listening and dialogue. Our products are approachable, human-centered, and designed to help others.


We confront hard truths about systems of oppression and racism and their enduring effects. We strive to disrupt narratives that cause harm to the region's communities most affected by and vulnerable to these inequities.