All Things Census


Revising the Past, Using 2010 Census Data

Each decade’s census not only provides fresh statistics on the U.S. population, but also is the basis for updating a broad range of previously published federal demographic estimates and survey benchmarks. Though necessary, the changes can produce hiccups in trend data. One example was in last week’s Census Bureau release of income, poverty and health insurance statistics for 2011. Read more


News Coverage of 2011 Census Data: It’s the Economy

When the Census Bureau released 2011 American Community Survey data today, much of the media coverage focused on income, poverty and other state or local economic estimates. Although much coverage cited grim indicators, other stories suggested that the economy finally is bottoming out after years of decline.

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Counts and Characteristics of Hispanics in Large Metros

A new report from the Pew Hispanic Center analyzes and compares the counts and characteristics of Latinos who live in the 60 metropolitan areas with the largest Hispanic populations, using data from the 2010 American Community Survey. Two interactive maps that accompany the report show key characteristics of Hispanics in those metropolitan areas and population distribution across counties of the six largest Hispanic origin groups. Read more


Americans’ Views about Poverty and Economic Well-Being

The Census Bureau reported today that the nation’s poverty rate was unchanged at 15.0% in 2011 and that 46.2 million people lived in poverty, also not statistically different from 2010, a pattern change after three consecutive years of increase in both numbers. How do Americans describe their own economic circumstances, and how much priority do they give to helping the needy? A number of recent Pew Research Center reports are relevant to the national debate about poverty and economic well-being. Read more


Middle-Income Economics and Middle-Class Attitudes

A new Pew Research Center report documents a “lost decade” for middle-income Americans, analyzing government data that shows a decline in economic well-being and exploring findings from a new survey that adults who describe themselves as middle class are somewhat more downbeat about their finances and their children’s future than they used to be. Read more


Census Bureau Pursues New Questions on Race and Hispanic Origin

The Census Bureau has released a lengthy research report that endorses dropping the word “Negro” from Census forms, and takes a step down the road toward rewriting the way it asks Americans about their race and ethnic identity. The work is an effort to match categories on the census form with how Americans see themselves. Read more


Census Bureau Considers Changing Its Race/Hispanic Questions

The Census Bureau presents new research tomorrow that attempts to address the frequent mismatch between Americans’ self-identity and the race or Hispanic categories they are offered on their census questionnaires. The issue is especially important for counting Hispanics, the nation’s largest minority group. Read more


The Middle Class Shrinks and Income Segregation Rises

In 1980, 23% of U.S. lower-income households lived in majority low-income neighborhoods; in 2010, that had risen to 28%. At the other end of the economic scale, the share of upper-income households living in majority upper-income neighborhoods doubled, to 18% in 2010 from 9% in 1980, according to a new Pew Research Center income segregation report based on census data. Read more


Explaining Why Minority Births Now Outnumber White Births

The nation’s racial and ethnic minority groups—especially Hispanics—are growing more rapidly than the non-Hispanic white population, fueled by both immigration and births. This trend has been taking place for decades, and one result is the Census Bureau’s announcement today that non-Hispanic whites now account for a minority of births in the U.S. for the first time. Read more


Divorce and the Great Recession

At the Population Association of America’s annual conference in San Francisco this week, papers on the Great Recession’s impact on families, wealth, children, young adults, older Americans and other realms of life will be presented in at least 10 of the 200-plus sessions. Much of the research is preliminary, but it raises intriguing questions. Read more