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Demographic changes result in increasing diversity in Illinois, new data presents

URBANA, Ill. — How do we determine the best ways for community and economic development in Illinois? How do you know what to vote for in the upcoming elections? The best place to start is in understanding demographic composition.

The 2020 decennial census revealed that Illinois’ population decreased slightly between 2010 and 2020, shrinking by 0.1 percent; however, overall population change is not the whole story. The demographics of Illinois are shifting and the state is becoming increasingly diverse. Understanding the demographic composition of our state is important, as this information is instrumental in understanding the communities and people we serve.

The Illinois Demographic Trends webinar, hosted by University of Illinois Extension and presented by Zach Kennedy, will share the results from the latest Census with a particular focus on Illinois. The free online webinar begins at noon Nov. 30.

During the webinar, participants will explore population and demographic characteristics of Illinois, based on the 2020 Census, and the potential implications for the state.

Data presented will include a comparison of the state’s urban, rural and Chicago metropolitan region counties, as well as a comparison of Illinois to neighboring states. This will be followed by the opportunity for webinar participants to ask questions about the Census or other demographic data resources.

About the Presenter:

Zach Kennedy is an Extension specialist in Community and Economic Development and helps Extension colleagues, local governments, and non-profit organizations build their capacity to engage in data-informed decision making and planning. His areas of expertise are in demographics, economic analysis, and planning. He has been with Extension since 2009, previously working as an Extension Educator in Champaign, Ford, Iroquois, and Vermilion Counties.

Pre-registration is required at If reasonable accommodation is needed to participate, or for more information, contact Nancy Ouedraogo at Early requests are strongly encouraged to allow sufficient time for meeting access needs. 

SOURCE: Nancy Ouedraogo, State Specialist in Community Economic Development, University of Illinois Extension
WRITER: Erin Wunderlich, Writer, University of Illinois Extension

ABOUT EXTENSION: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.