Bringing facts into focus
The APM Research Lab & Analyst Group is a new division intended help American Public Media accomplish ambitious goals related to informing the public by producing credible research- and analysis- based content.
Mission: To foster an engaged democracy by inspiring curiosity, inquiry and discussion through fact-driven, credible research and analysis.
Values: Independent, Useful, Informative, Non-partisan
The APM Research Lab is home to a team of researchers and analysts who inform and equip the communities we serve with both original and curated research, facts and analysis. This work helps inform journalists, civic and business leaders, and others who want to know what the best data and the best research has to say about challenges — and opportunities — facing families, communities, and organizations throughout the nation.
The Research Lab augments the work of other members of the American Public Media Group family, including Minnesota Public Radio News, Marketplace, Southern California Public Radio, APM Reports, and the Water Main.
The Research Lab will inform the work of partner organizations and the broader public through traditional reports, as well as infographics, blog posts, interactives, presentations, and other platforms.
For additional information, including how we might work for you, contact us.
Craig Helmstetter, Managing Partner (e-mail or 651-290-1219)
Helmstetter leads the Research Lab, directing the overall agenda and developing new projects, as well as providing hands-on analysis. Helmstetter joins APM from Wilder Research, where he helped establish and then lead its Minnesota Compass initiative. In that role, he created and managed research projects, marketed research and data analysis services, developed and oversaw a research team, and frequently gave presentations on major social, economic and demographic trends facing communities throughout the state.
Helmstetter also has experience as an evaluator with Minnesota’s Legislative Auditor’s Office, a project manager with a survey research center, and currently serves as vice president of the board of the Community Indicators Consortium. He is a graduate of Luther College (1992), and received both a master’s degree in Community and Regional Planning (1997) and a Ph.D. in Sociology (2001) from the University of Oregon, where he focused on quantitative methods, survey research, public opinion, and social stratification.
Andi Egbert, Senior Research Associate (e-mail or 651-290-1403)
Egbert relishes telling stories with data. She comes to APM from the Minnesota State Demographic Center, where she served as assistant director and provided expert data analysis to policymakers, government staff, the media, and organizations. Egbert wrote and presented regularly across Minnesota on topics such as aging, education, immigration, poverty, and the workforce.
Previously, Egbert served as a research scientist for Minnesota Compass, a data indicators project at Wilder Research, and prepared the annual Minnesota KIDS COUNT data book as research director at the Children’s Defense Fund Minnesota. She has also served as a writer and editor for several publications.
Egbert holds a Master of Public Policy degree from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, with concentrations in social policy and vulnerable populations (2005). She also earned a bachelor’s degree in English with a journalism minor from Valparaiso University (1998).
Kassira Absar, Research Associate (e-mail or 651-290-1457)
Absar joins APM from OpenGlobalRights at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, where she was a research fellow and lead project manager on an international survey exploring the potential for local funding for human rights organizations in Mexico City, Mexico and Bogotá, Colombia. She helped design, implement, and analyze the study.
Absar has also lived and worked in the Basque Country of Spain, as well as Colombia, Bangladesh, and Nepal. Absar holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland, College Park (2009) and a Master in Public Policy from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs (2015).
Stories with contributions from the APM Research Lab
- MN industry leaders want more immigrant workers as restrictive policies loom (MPR; September 14, 2017)
- 1 in 4 in Imperial County lives in poverty (SPCR; September 14, 2017)
- Minn. makes economic gains, but racial disparities persist: 5 census survey takeaways (MPR; September 14, 2017)
- Signs of economic progress for black Minnesotans, but wide poverty gaps remain (MPR; September 14, 2017
- APM’s New Research Lab (AdWeek’s Fishbowl; April 28, 2017)
- American Public Media Announces Formation of APM Research Lab and Analyst Group (APM press release; April 27, 2017)