Our Society

Our SocietyThere are a wide variety of dynamics that affect our social well-being, but the most consequential originate close to home. They also affect every member of our communities, from the youngest to oldest, right from the earliest stages in their development to their later years in life.

For the purpose of evaluating our social vitality, State of the Basin research is organized around four themes: Demographics, Education & Learning, Civic Engagement & Safety, and Wellness.

When assessing social vitality, researchers evaluate a series of social topics that would include:


  • Population size
  • Population structure
  • Population distribution
Education & Learning

  • Educational attainment
  • Literacy
  • Access to ongoing learning opportunities
  • Readiness to learn
Civic Engagement & Safety

  • Volunteerism and advocacy
  • Voter turnout
  • Perceptions of belonging
  • Crime rates and perceptions of safety

  • Health services
  • Health status
  • Poverty and homelessness
  • Gender and age equality

Once trends in our social structure are analyzed for these four areas, results paint a vivid picture of the social conditions within our communities and region.

Additional Resources (PDF):

Our Economy

Economic1Of the many factors that collectively influence our level of well-being, there is one that resonates deeply with most families: the economy. It’s a common theme whenever we discuss the resources and services available in our communities or the ability of parents to provide for their children. And ultimately, the economy is affected by a diverse range of factors. [More]

Our Culture

Our CultureCulture is a relatively new pillar in RDI’s State of the Basin well-being research. It is an area both difficult to define and understand because culture often means different things to different people. It is individual, but also collective; it is deeply personal, but also shared. Any understanding of culture involves our own sense of self and our connections to family and friends, broader ethnic and social groups, and our communities and region as a whole. [More]

Our Environment

Our EnvironmentFrom the quality of the air we breathe to the condition of the landscape where we live and work, we all experience the daily effects of the environment on our health and well-being. Residents of Columbia Basin Boundary communities already know we live in a beautiful part of the world, but it’s crucial, both for present and future generations, that we are aware of the state of the environment so that forthcoming policy decisions are well-informed. [More]