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An Introduction to the U.S. Demographic System John F. Long www.usademography.com.

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Presentation on theme: "An Introduction to the U.S. Demographic System John F. Long www.usademography.com."— Presentation transcript:

1 An Introduction to the U.S. Demographic System John F. Long

2 Introduction U.S. demographic system evolved over time: U.S. demographic system evolved over time: –Rough guesswork in colonial times –Decennial censuses since 1790 –Birth and death registration in the early 1900s –Estimates and projections in the last half of the 20 th century –Integrated Accounting system implicit in the American Community Survey

3 Inventory vs. Accounting Inventory Approach Inventory Approach –Population Stocks –Decennial Census Enumeration –Independent Counts –Mechanism of Population Change Ignored Accounting Approach Accounting Approach –Population Flows –Tracking of Components of Population Change –Estimates and Projections –Demographic Analysis Combined Approach Combined Approach

4 Population A by age, race, and sex Place A Population B by age, race, and sex Place B Population C by age, race, and sex Place C Decennial Census Counts An Inventory Approach

5 U.S. Population: Census Counts from 1790 and Projections for Source: U.S Census Bureau, Decennial Censuses ; Abraham Lincoln, Annual Message to Congress: December 1, 1862.

6 Need for an Accounting System To estimate population change between censuses To estimate population change between censuses To explain population change To explain population change To aid government and business policy and planning To aid government and business policy and planning To project future population To project future population To plan and evaluate censuses To plan and evaluate censuses

7 Population A by age, race, and sex Place A Population B by age, race, and sex Place B Population C by age, race, and sex Place C Migration

8 Basic Demographic Accounting P x+1 t+1 = P x t + B (if x<0) - D x + I x - O x where, P x t is the population age x in a given place at time t B is the number of births in a given place between t and t+1 D x is then number of deaths age x in a given place between t and t+1 I x is the number of in-migrants age x to a given place between t and t+1 O x is the number of out-migrants age x from a given place between t and t+1.

9 Development of Demographic Accounting Approach –Nationwide birth and death registration began in the early 1900s –Estimates and projections for states, counties, and places developed in the last half of the 20 th century –Demographic Analysis became a key tool to evaluate decennial census quality –Integrated accounting system implicit in the American Community Survey for the 21 st century

10 Elements of US Demographic Accounting System Master Address Files Master Address Files Decennial Censuses Decennial Censuses Birth and Death Registers (NCHS) Birth and Death Registers (NCHS) Immigration Data (INS & ACS) Immigration Data (INS & ACS) Domestic Migration Data (IRS) Domestic Migration Data (IRS) Adjustments and Corrections Adjustments and Corrections American Community Survey American Community Survey

11 Master Address Files Importance of tying population to geography Importance of tying population to geography Address canvassing prior to census year Address canvassing prior to census year Corrections during census operation Corrections during census operation Updates between censuses Updates between censuses Provides frame for census and survey operations Provides frame for census and survey operations Issues with permits, construction, demolitions, and conversions Issues with permits, construction, demolitions, and conversions Addresses vs. physical location. Addresses vs. physical location.

12 Decennial Census Counts Base on which all of system is built Base on which all of system is built Provides ground truth check of accounting system Provides ground truth check of accounting system Key demographic data collected: location, relationship, sex, age, race, Hispanic origin Key demographic data collected: location, relationship, sex, age, race, Hispanic origin

13 Measure Death and Birth Components Birth Registration Birth Registration – Ties birth to place of residence of mother –Race data is for parents not child – and uses older classification system –Completeness of registration is assumed Death registration Death registration –Ties death to place of residence or last address? –Race is not self reported –Completeness and speed of tabulation is an issue

14 Estimating International Migration Flows Legal immigration Legal immigration –Difference between residence change and legal status change –Problems with place of intended residence –Completeness issues Legal Emigration Legal Emigration –Lack of data collection when leaving the country –Problems of using other countries data Illegal immigration Illegal immigration –Methods are often indirect –Question of census coverage Alternative data from the American Community Survey Alternative data from the American Community Survey

15 Measuring Domestic Migration Use of matched IRS returns to provide county in and out migration Use of matched IRS returns to provide county in and out migration Coverage of IRS data Coverage of IRS data Assigning age, race, hispanic origin, and sex data Assigning age, race, hispanic origin, and sex data Timing of data collection and tabulation Timing of data collection and tabulation

16 Develop Yearly Population Estimates and Controls Develop annual national, state, county, and place data for funding and other administrative uses Develop annual national, state, county, and place data for funding and other administrative uses Provide county age, race, sex, Hispanic origin controls for the American Community Survey Provide county age, race, sex, Hispanic origin controls for the American Community Survey Issues of timeliness and accuracy of input data Issues of timeliness and accuracy of input data

17 Problems with an Accounting System Errors in specifying the system can multiply over time Errors in specifying the system can multiply over time Errors in data input can cause faulty results Errors in data input can cause faulty results Structure of the system may change over time Structure of the system may change over time

18 Pre-School Lunchboxes Workman Lunchkits Bin A Workman Lunchkits School Lunchboxes Bin B Workman Lunchkits Misc Junk Bin C Extra Inventories Fired Boss More Overtime Pay !

19 Reconcile with new decennial census data Need to recalibrate estimates from demographic accounting with decennial census results Need to recalibrate estimates from demographic accounting with decennial census results Census coverage error vs. population estimation error Census coverage error vs. population estimation error Incorporating error of closure corrections into new estimates. Incorporating error of closure corrections into new estimates.

20 Reconciling Inventory and Accounting Systems Audit of the current demographic accounts Audit of the current demographic accounts –Differences with a Population Register –Potential inconsistencies in the system –Future Hazards and Opportunities


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