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Upward Mobility Framework

Assessing and creating conditions that can propel people out of poverty and narrow racial inequities in communities. Inspired to learn more? 
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The Metrics and Tools

Learn more about the Urban Institute’s framework for increasing upward mobility and racial equity, access your community’s mobility metrics, and explore our planning guide for local action.

These mobility metrics data tables are designed to help local leaders in every county and over 450 cities in the United States measure the status of and progress toward increasing upward mobility and equity in their communities.
Explore the data tables

Planning Guide
Our recent publication, Boosting Upward Mobility: A Planning Guide for Local Action, provides a step-by-step guide for local government and community leaders to better understand impediments to upward mobility and build a cross-sector team that can plan, advocate for, and implement a set of systems changes focused on bringing all members of their community out of poverty and creating more equitable outcomes.
Learn more about the planning guide

Latest Blog Posts
  • Group of people meeting with technology and paperwork.
    Understanding Local Opportunities for Upward Mobility Requires Pairing Data with Community Engagement
    Urban’s Mobility Metrics can help local policymakers identify barriers to mobility from poverty in their communities and develop solutions.
  • Meeting Them Where They Are: How St. Lucie County Used Data Walks to Prioritize Community Engagement
    The Urban Institute’s Boosting Upward Mobility cohort counties have adopted various methods, including convening advisory boards and conducting focus groups, to hear residents’ thoughts on what needs to change to help lift people out of poverty in their communities. In St. Lucie County, Florida, leaders opted for a community engaged research approach called a data walk.
  • Nothing about Us without Us: Boosting Upward Mobility in Summit County
    Elected officials tend to view poverty as a purely financial issue. Often, plans to address economic inequality start with goals like growing small businesses, raising the minimum wage, or creating more jobs.
See all blog posts

About the Project
Urban is measuring and building evidence on the key community conditions that have the potential to increase upward mobility and curb racial inequities.
Learn more about the project