About Community Indicator Systems

What is a Community Indicator?

Community indicators are measurements that provide information about past and current trends within a community. They show the relationship between social, environmental, and economic factors that affect a community’s well-being. Community indicators provide information on the overall direction of a community, providing data on where it is improving, declining, and/or staying the same.

Community indicators are often grouped into category areas or themes. Cumberland County Tracking Progress has grouped the community indicators into eight theme areas and has attached goals to these themes.

  1. Downtown Revitalization- Goal: King Street is a vibrant and thriving place
  2. Energy- Goal: Energy opportunities drive community prosperity
  3. Quality of Life- Goal: Our community enjoys a high level of well-being
  4. Community Profile: Describes general characteristics and information about Bridgewater

What is a Community Indicator System?

Community indicators systems identify and track indicators that speak to a community’s well-being. They look at a web of indicators that relate to the economic, environmental, cultural, social, and other issues that matter most to a community. The system tracks and shares data for each indicator, making the information fully available to members of the community.

A community indicator system allows a city or community to look at the inter-relationship between many indicators, seeing whether they interact to enhance a community’s well-being.

How Do Community Indicator Systems Benefit their Communities?

A community indicator system provides a way for individuals, community groups, and organizations in all sectors to easily access data. It also enhances collaboration, provides tools to encourage progress, improves decision-making, informs research, and increases public knowledge about key economic, environmental, social, and cultural issues. At a more immediate level, a community indicator system benefits all members of a community by providing reliable, credible information.

More recently, the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) has been leading the way in working with communities across Canada and internationally to incorporate the SDGs into their community indicator systems. In so doing, cities are better able to track the impact of their local actions on the indicators related to the SDGs. Cumberland County Tracking Progress is one of the first community indicator system in this expanding area.

Cumberland County’s Data

How Do I Access The Data?

Along the left side of the website you will see eight icons for the eight theme areas in Cumberland County Tracking Progress. When you click on an icon, it will provide you with a list of indicators. Clicking an indicator will take you to a page with three different ways of learning about the indicator. The first tab provides background information, such as the source and why the indicator is important. The second provides the data in the form of a graph – where the data is available, we show the data trends over time as well as a comparison of community areas with the most recent data. 

Where Does Cumberland County Tracking Progress Get Its Information and Data?

Data for Cumberland County Tracking Progress is obtained from reliable and credible external sources. The parameters and limitations of each source are stated with the background information for each indicator.

All the data on this community indicator system comes from a variety of secondary sources. The source information is found on the description tab accompanying each indicator.

Using Cumberland County Tracking Progress

Who Might Benefit from Cumberland County Tracking Progress?

Cumberland County Tracking Progress is designed to benefit all citizens of Cumberland County, providing reliable and credible information on key indicators. This site helps citizen to be informed and involved in their community and to track how our community is doing against the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Groups who may benefit from Cumberland County include:

  • Government and other decision-makers to inform policy and processes.
  • Businesses to explore connections to their corporate social responsibility plans and SDGs.
  • Students to research projects and take action in the community.
  • Non-profit organizations to gather information, inform proposals and tailor programming to their community’s needs.
  • Community members to learn more about their neighbourhood and their city.

Who is in Charge of Cumberland County Tracking Progress?

Cumberland County Tracking Progress is run by the Cumberland County Energy Authority.