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Dig it: behind the numbers

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Articles - November 2011
Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Research editor Brandon Sawyer has applied his considerable research and number-crunching abilities to producing many features for Oregon Business: the data-rich Indicators and Databursts, along with our myriad lists such as the Private 150, a list of the biggest private companies in Oregon.

1111_EditorLetter
Brandon Sawyer has been digging for data for 10 years as the research editor of Oregon Business. 
// Photo by Alexandra Shyshkina

He also is the maestro of our three 100 Best research projects. Chief among those, the 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon project this year was named the No. 1 research project in the region by the American Society of Business Publication Editors in no small part because of Brandon’s tremen- dous skills. He’s been the research editor for the magazine for a decade, and brings a detailed knowledge of the state to his work along with an understanding of where the numbers are kept.

Building on that knowledge, Brandon launches in this issue Data Dig, an occasional series that looks underneath the hood of various business and economic topics. This month’s installment started out with a simple question about whether people follow jobs as we looked at conflicting population and employment numbers being released. Turns out, sometimes they do, and sometimes they don’t, and it’s not a simple answer. That’s what Data Dig will do: find out what’s really going on behind the numbers, which can be so numbing, and put them into context.

The wealth of data that Brandon produced for this Data Dig couldn’t all fit in the print magazine (research editors can go wild), so we’ve posted more regional job and population analysis and charts on our website at OregonBusiness.com/population. Check it out. It’s a great snapshot of how the regions differ.

The cover story by managing editor Linda Baker also came about because of another simple question: How many women sit on boards in Oregon? Just doing the math is often the most powerful flashlight we have.

robin-BLOGRobin Doussard
 

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