Data Makes the Case for Action

A focus on data sets Texas 2036 apart. We don’t start with an agenda of laws to pass; we don’t cherry-pick numbers to push people down a preordained path. Instead, we use data to identify what the state needs and find ways of meeting those needs.

A great many statistics illuminate the challenges and opportunities Texas faces as it approaches its bicentennial in 2036. We’ll have another 10 million people — another Houston, Dallas and San Antonio combined — in 17 years. Our state leads the nation in the number of people without health insurance. There is a huge and widening gulf between the educational attainment of our students and the needs of our economy and employers … The list goes on.

But what do those numbers mean for you? Do the good ones make you feel good about living in a big, growing, diverse state? Do the bad ones make you worry about ensuring that your children can benefit from the prosperity our state has had?

Or do they make you want to act?

Texas 2036 has accumulated an enormous amount of data — hundreds of different data sets reside on our online page. But for us, the data is more than a collection of numbers.

It tells a story. It makes a case. It demands action.

Our Case for Action shows what we mean.

The Case for Action is a digital presentation of key statistics that show how Texas got to where it is — and the challenges and opportunities we face as we look to the future. 

  • It walks through the state’s population and economic growth (which, it demonstrates, has been far more concentrated in urban counties than in rural ones). 
  • It takes a snapshot of our schools and student population. 
  • It adds up the cost of the hours we’re wasting in traffic and shows which counties suffer from a lack of broadband access. 
  • It demonstrates the need for health innovation, contrasting the growing costs of healthcare with Texas’ low ranking on many health measures. 
  • And it looks at our water supply and the billions more gallons we’ll need to sustain our growing population and economy in 2036.

It also makes the powerful point that we don’t have much time to prepare for what’s coming. Because the Texas Legislature meets just once every two years, state leaders have just eight chances before our bicentennial to address the future needs of 28 million Texans who are here and the more than 10 million who are on their way.

The Case for Action concludes with our Data Explorer, an interactive feature that lets you sort through state and county-level data on Texas’ population and health, education, infrastructure and water needs and resources. It’s not everything you need to know about where we are and where we’re headed, but it’s a great start.

We hope you’ll explore these resources. We hope they’ll inform discussions that all Texans need to be a part of as we look for ways to pass the state’s prosperity on to future generations.

These are big issues. It’s good to have confidence. It’s reasonable to be concerned.

But more than anything, Texas needs you to act.