Wisconsin Economy

Wisconsin sits at the center of national debates on jobs, racial equity, unions, and tax fairness, and since its inception COWS has provided economic analysis and policy ideas to build the high road in this state. Documenting challenges in the economy and demonstrating the promise of policy and practice, COWS is working to improve workers’ lives, create decent jobs, reduce Black/white disparities, and build a stronger state.

The State of Working Wisconsin

Our annual analysis of the Wisconsin economy, The State of Working Wisconsin, provides a view of how the state is working for working people. In 2020, we released a fully digital update to the State of Working Wisconsin. See previous State of Working Wisconsin reports here.

Racial Inequality in Wisconsin

Our report, Wisconsin’s Extreme Racial Disparity, provides a Wisconsin-focused summary to the Economic Policy Institute‘s report on racial disparities in the Midwest, Race in the Heartland. Our report provides a careful historical context and a broadly informed policy framework that are critical to winning greater racial equity throughout this region.

This analysis continues to inform our work in Wisconsin and beyond. Racial equity is a critical thread through our work across health, water, cities, transportation, and more.


COWS has long produced research and writing focused on the Wisconsin economy. These reports center the realities of the economy for Wisconsin’s working people.

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Want to learn more about our work researching the Wisconsin economy? Contact Laura Dresser.