Historical Report of Opportunity, the first statistical measure of national and state opportunity levels in the United States over the past four decades, uses publicly available data to provide a holistic picture of how the climate for opportunity has changed in all fifty states and Washington, DC.

The analysis uses data from 1970, 1980, 1990, 2000, and 2010, enabling comparisons of ten key indicators: unemployment rate; median household income; poverty rate; income inequality; preschool enrollment; on-time high school graduation; post-secondary completion; disconnected youth rate; violent crime rate; and access to medical doctors.

The data show that overall much of the growth in opportunity is fueled by advances in education. Yet troubling negative trends, such as a rise in poverty since 2000 and increasing youth disconnection since 1990, impede upward mobility.

The report was jointly developed by Measure of America and Opportunity Nation.

Publication Details

Historical Report of Opportunity
Burd-Sharps, Sarah
Measure of America
Publish Date
Burd-Sharps, Sarah, Historical Report of Opportunity (Measure of America, 6/24/2014).