How to use the State of the States


Click on a state to explore the latest Policy and Political updates.



You can refine your search by applying the category and date filters located above the map and within each State detail page.



Click “View State Profile” to find out more about each state and Washington DC


The State

of the States

About the State of the States

If we want to understand the United States, we need to take a step back from national politics and look at the States themselves. There are 99 elected legislative chambers across the 50 United States – and a huge percentage of American lawmaking gets done there, and not in the US House of Representatives or the US Senate.

Welcome to The State of the States, our unique, free to use, apolitical resource whose purpose is to lend information and insights into US state politics and policy. Here we build on the coverage and expertise from our blog, USAPP – US Politics and Policy to bring you regular updates and data on the US states. It’s a resource that will be useful to you whether you’re a student, academic, journalist, policymaker or state legislator.

It’s all about the local

With the recent decline in state and city newspapers and other forms of local news media, there’s a growing gap in coverage of what’s going on in state capitols, town halls and community meetings across the country. With this in mind, there are two parts to The State of the States:

  1. We collect and curate updates from state and local bloggers and present them to you on our main map. You can see what’s going on and where. You can also filter these by any one of more than 50 policy areas and by time. Most of our sources are grassroots bloggers, but some are local and national newspapers too. Be warned – many of our sources are political. And while we try to present what they’re trying to say in a neutral way, if you delve into the blogs themselves, you will definitely see what side of the political aisle they’re writing from.
  2. We give you a comprehensive databank of state information, including a short summary introducing the state. In the ‘State Profile’ view you can find out information like who the state’s Governor is, who controls what parts of the state’s government, and information on state policies like marijuana legalisation, and even the state’s credit rating. And then you can download all of this information as an Excel spreadsheet.

A winning project

In April 2019, the State of the States was recognised with a Guardian University Award for digital innovation. Now including nearly 1,600 news and blog updates and 2,500 data points from across the 50 states and Washington DC, the State of the States was seen by a panel of judges as an important tool for exploring US state politics and policy issues. The project now has pride of place in the Guardian University Awards’ ideas bank, and will serve as best practice inspiration to others.

About the US Centre and Meet the Team

The State of the States is a project from the LSE United States Centre. The LSE United States Centre is a hub for global expertise, analysis and commentary on America. Its mission is to promote policy-relevant and internationally-oriented scholarship to meet the growing demand for fresh analysis and critical debate on the United States. The US Centre pioneers an approach to understanding contemporary America that is diverse, multidisciplinary and internationalised, drawing on the 50+ LSE faculty who write, teach and comment about the United States across virtually every department.  

Chris Gilson – Managing Editor
Chris Gilson is the Managing Editor of USAPP, the US Centre’s daily blog on US politics and policy. In 2012, Chris was the recipient of a UK Times Higher Education Leadership and Management Award for Knowledge Exchange/Transfer Initiative of the Year for the LSE’s blog initiatives. He is the co-author, with Amy Mollett, Cheryl Brumley, and Sierra Williams, of Communicating Your Research with Social Media: A Practical Guide to Using Blogs, Podcasts, Data Visualisations and Video (Sage, 2017).

Sarah Scaffidi – Researcher, State of the States
Sarah Scaffidi is the Researcher of the US Centre’s State of the States project. Sarah recently completed an MSc in Social Policy Research from the LSE, and has spent two years working in policy communications in Washington, D.C.

Get in touch!

The current version of the State of the States is an experiment. We know that it’s going to be useful, but we want you to tell us how you’re using it. So, email us at [email protected] or send us a tweet at @LSE_US.


We’d like to thank Soak, who have helped us to take the State of the States from an idea to a fully realised product. We’d also like to thank the LSE’s Annual Fund who have provided financial support for the project. And we’d like to thank colleagues at the LSE US Centre, Ade Akande, Becca Potton, and Gokhan Ciflikli for their comments and critiques, and our Director Professor Peter Trubowitz for his support throughout the project.