Thematic Mapping

A perceptive person once observed, “A picture is worth a thousand words.”  So it is with a thematic data map.  The results of a data analysis that would take more than a thousand words to explain can be illustrated on a map which uses gradations of color to show the geographic distribution of the data. The thematic map of household size, shown below, immediately tells us where the smaller and larger households can be found, in a way that the table does not reveal:

Thematic MapData TableTractHH Size1101.004.011095.003.360931.023.101094.003.180931.042.570928.003.530926.002.910929.003.110925.002.821100.023.75

A well designed thematic map can be a valuable tool.  We have prepared thematic maps for a wide range of clients and purposes, including:  illustrating poverty data for community legal assistance agencies; showing varying levels of support for candidates and ballot propositions; and identifying the market draw of emergency room patients, by Zip Code, for a Valley hospital.


The Maguire Company, Phoenix AZ – Analysis and thematic mapping of support for municipal voting proposition, 2002.

The Maguire Company, Phoenix AZ – Demographic thematic mapping and analysis services for study of neighborhood preservation and investment strategies, 1998.

Arizona Department of Commerce, Enterprise Zone Administration – Analysis of poverty and unemployment data to test eligibility approaches; preparation of statewide poverty thematic atlas, 1996.

Catholic Social Service, AARP, South Mountain YMCA, Foundation for Senior Living, Cannon & Associates, Roosevelt School District, William E. Morris Institute for Justice, Arizona Foundation for Behavioral Health, John C. Lincoln Health Network, Protecting Arizona’s Families Coalition – numerous maps, 1996 to 2010.