Faculty Sponsor

Karl Schmitt


Arts and Sciences


Data Science, Economics

Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Symposium Date

Spring 5-1-2020


Based upon publicly available data, there are approximately 43 crimes committed per 1,000 residents in Chicago, IL with a percentage that is 149% higher than the average city in Illinois. For years, researchers, politicians, and individuals have struggled with what can be done to deter crime. One method that is often tried is the introduction of community programs and outreach. This research aims to analyze the relationship between churches and crimes committed to determine if increasing church presence is a viable method for crime reduction. Using data from the Chicago CLEAR data set of crimes committed from 2001 to present couple with church location data, visualizations were created to illustrate crime progression over the years. The churches used come from both the Department of Homeland Security's Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data and the Chicago Church Finder. Data cleaning was done in Python, exploration was done with manual review, visualizations were created in Python using Bokeh graphing tool and Tableau, and density clustering was performed using Python.

Biographical Information about Author(s)

As a student and lifelong resident of the Chicagoland area, I am no stranger to its beautiful landscapes and big-city energy, but I am not naïve to its overwhelming crime rate. Growing up in church, I wondered whether the power of community involvement in faith-based activities could decrease crime. This project allowed me to dig deeper into the connections between these two very different aspects of life.