Series: Known Unknowns

When debating Gov. Scott Walker's decision to not call special elections to fill two vacancies in the Wisconsin Legislature, state political figures and commentators have argued over the move's implications elections law, public spending and democracy itself. But what about precedent?
As more people die of overdoses — sometimes after unknowingly using highly potent opioids — public health officials are also struggling for clarity.
Data about substance abuse is plentiful. The difficult part is pulling together all that information, analyzing it, and identifying the patterns.
The state of Wisconsin is getting ready to parcel out $14.5 million to help communities replace thousands of lead service lines. However, short of digging up every single pipe in a community or surveying every property owner, there's no way to know for sure where all the lead is located.
No one can say for sure how many lead pipes drinking water runs through on a daily basis around the United States, or where specifically those pipes are located.
Madison might be at the center of Wisconsin's loudest discussion about homelessness right now, but the problem extends far beyond the state's capital city. In fact, the majority of the state’s homeless people documented in a 2015 federal report were outside the Madison and Milwaukee areas.
ShotSpotter screen view
As cities around the United States struggle to respond to gun violence in neighborhoods where residents may not trust law enforcement, dozens of police departments are turning to a gunshot-detection system called ShotSpotter.
The lack of data in adult literacy
In many ways, campaigns to improve literacy are more sophisticated than ever. In many ways, campaigns to improve literacy are more sophisticated than ever.