Research

Common Sense Institute (CSI) strives to develop insightful and educational research on the most critical debates facing Arizona. CSI was founded in 2022 and employs rigorous research techniques and dynamic modeling to evaluate the potential impact of issues on the Arizona economy and individual opportunity. CSI provides elected officials, policymakers, and Arizonans with facts and data-driven analysis to help make informed decisions about the biggest issues facing the state. CSI’s research will spark innovative policy solutions and bipartisan, solutions-based discussion about the future of Arizona.

Inflation in Arizona: May 2024 Update

Inflation in Arizona: May 2024 Update

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Since the end of 2020, the typical Arizona household has had to spend a combined $34,078 more on food, housing, transportation, medical care, and other goods and services to buy the same stuff as they were buying three years ago.

Arizona Housing Competitiveness Index

Arizona Housing Competitiveness Index

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Historically, Arizona – and its greater Phoenix metro area – has had a relatively affordable housing market. Recently, though, housing costs in the Phoenix area rose faster than any other major metro area in the country during the pandemic.

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Arizona Jobs and Labor Force May 2024 Update

May 17, 2024 • 3 min read


FULL REPORT Author: Zachary Milne Introduction Arizona gained 9,800 nonfarm jobs in April (+0.30%) – putting Arizona in the top third of all states with the 16th fastest month-over-month gain. In addition, the March job growth numbers were revised upward from 8,700 nonfarm jobs to 9,400. For perspective, the total U.S. job growth rate in […]

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Does Your Community Have Enough Homes? The Housing Crisis and How It Impacts Your Backyard

May 16, 2024 • 13 min read


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In numerous recurring reports, CSI Arizona has highlighted the state’s ongoing struggle with the rapid increase in housing costs since the pandemic. One of our central tools for monitoring the issue has been the housing surplus/shortfall measure.

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Inflation in Arizona: May 2024 Update

May 15, 2024 • 3 min read


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Since the end of 2020, the typical Arizona household has had to spend a combined $34,078 more on food, housing, transportation, medical care, and other goods and services to buy the same stuff as they were buying three years ago.

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A Breakdown of the 2024 Arizona Legislative Session featuring Katie Ratlief and Wayne Schutsky

May 14, 2024 • 2 min read


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Joining Chairman and Host Earl Wright to unpack these issues are Katie Ratlief, Executive Director of Common Sense Institute, and Wayne Schutsky, a field correspondent with KJZZ. The three unpack the details of the legislative session, explore the legislative response to housing challenges, and discuss strategies to address homelessness in Arizona, among other issues.

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Arizona Housing Competitiveness Index

April 25, 2024 • 12 min read


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Historically, Arizona – and its greater Phoenix metro area – has had a relatively affordable housing market. Recently, though, housing costs in the Phoenix area rose faster than any other major metro area in the country during the pandemic.

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Growth & Change: How One Year of Universal Empowerment Scholarship Accounts Has (And Hasn’t) Altered Arizona’s K-12 Landscape

April 10, 2024 • 13 min read


FULL REPORT Authors: Glenn Farley Introduction For over a year, Arizona’s Empowerment Scholarship Account (ESA) program has been open to any school-aged Arizona resident under its universal eligibility category. During that time, program enrollment has grown from 12,000 to 77,000 students. 51,000 of the new enrollees have been under the new universal category, implying 14,000 […]

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March Madness: The Economic Impact of Glendale’s Final Four Basketball Championship and Arizona’s Sports & Tourism Sector

April 4, 2024 • 10 min read


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This year the Men’s Final Four is hosted in Phoenix for the second time. When the Men’s Final Four Championship games were last hosted in Phoenix (2017), it was the second highest-attended Final Four game (with 77,612 average nightly attendees).

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Arizona Government Budget Competitiveness Index

April 2, 2024 • 12 min read


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A thriving economy depends in part on an efficient government that operates at sustainable levels. One measure of efficiency: given the powers and duties reserved to and assumed by a government, how much does it take from the broader economy to accomplish them?

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Arizona Jobs and Labor Force Update March 22, 2024

March 22, 2024 • 2 min read


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Job growth was slow in February, with the Grand Canyon state posting a gain of just 2,200 jobs (+0.07%), but on a lagging year-over-year basis, growth remains stronger at 2.1%.

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Housing Affordability in Arizona: Quarter 1 2024 Update

March 19, 2024 • 8 min read


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At 102.15 (-3.5% since October 2023), the homebuyers ‘Misery Index’ remains at all-high time highs – despite falling about 10% last year, the Index is being held aloft by persistently high prices. For context, the long-run average of the Index is set to zero, and it peaked at 54.05 prior to the Great Recession.

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