There’s a big problem with how the census measures race

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2018-02-14 23:06Z by Steven

There’s a big problem with how the census measures race

The Washington Post
2018-02-06

Richard Alba, Distinguished Professor of Sociology
Graduate Center, City University of New York


Activists hold signs during a news conference in front of the Supreme Court in 2015. (Getty Images)

Will the 2020 Census be accurate? A number of observers have been worrying about that question for several reasons. For instance, the Justice Department has been trying to insert a citizenship question on the census form; such a question could discourage many immigrants from completing the form. As a result, cities and regions with large numbers of immigrants could see their populations seriously undercounted, with troubling results for political representation, services and funding.

But there’s another reason to be worried, one that hasn’t gotten much attention. The Census Bureau just announced that its 2020 form will not fundamentally change the questions it uses to ask about ethnic and racial origins. This may seem like a minor technical issue — but it will have major real-world implications. If it does not incorporate already-tested improvements into these questions, the census will deliver a less accurate picture of the United States.

And as a result, census statistics will continue to roil the public discussion of diversity, by exaggerating white decline and the imminence of a majority-minority United States. Political figures and pundits who oppose immigration and diversity could exploit that, peddling an alarmist narrative that doesn’t fit with the long-standing reality of mixing between immigrant and established Americans….

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , ,

2020 Census To Keep Racial, Ethnic Categories Used In 2010

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-01-26 21:16Z by Steven

2020 Census To Keep Racial, Ethnic Categories Used In 2010

National Public Radio
2018-01-26

Hansi Lo Wang, National Correspondent


A map shows the locations of the U.S. Census Bureau’s regional offices for the 2020 census.
Hansi Lo Wang/NPR

A Census Bureau announcement about the race and ethnicity questions for the 2020 census suggests the Trump administration will not support Obama-era proposals to change how the U.S. government collects information about race and ethnicity, census experts say.

If approved, the proposals would change how the Latino population is counted and create a new checkbox on federal surveys for people with roots in the Middle East or North Africa. Research by the Census Bureau shows these revisions could improve the accuracy of the upcoming national headcount in 2020. Any changes would carry wide implications for legislative redistricting, civil rights laws and health statistics.

So far, though, the White House’s Office of Management and Budget, which sets the standards for race and ethnicity data for federal agencies, has not released any decisions. OMB has also not responded to NPR’s request for comment…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Census Bureau Statement on 2020 Census Race and Ethnicity Questions

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2018-01-26 20:40Z by Steven

Census Bureau Statement on 2020 Census Race and Ethnicity Questions

United States Census Bureau
2018-01-26
Release Number: CB18-RTQ.02

Public Information Office
Telephone: 301-763-3030
E-Mail: pio@census.gov

REPSONSE TO QUERY

Jan. 26, 2018 – The 2020 Census race and ethnicity questions will follow a two-question format for capturing race and ethnicity for both the 2018 Census Test and the 2020 Census, which adheres to the 1997 Standards for the Classification of Federal Data on Race and Ethnicity (Statistical Policy Directive No. 15) set by the Office of Management and Budget. The Census Bureau will not include a combined question format for collecting Hispanic origin and race, or a separate Middle Eastern or North African category on the census form. The upcoming 2018 Census Test in Providence County, R.I., which begins on March 16, will reflect the proposed 2020 Census race and ethnicity questions.

The Census Bureau remains on schedule as it implements the operational plan and will provide the planned 2020 Census questionnaire wording to Congress by March 31, 2018, as directed by law. The Census Bureau will continue to further its extensive research on how to collect accurate race and ethnicity data across its surveys.

For more information, click here.

Tags: , , , ,

Think race and ethnicity are permanent? Think again

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2017-07-14 17:26Z by Steven

Think race and ethnicity are permanent? Think again

N-IUSSP: IUSSP’s online news magazine
International Union for the Scientific Study of Population
2017-06-26

Editorial Committee

Add something else to the list of things that seem simple but are actually complicated – the way someone reports their race or ethnicity. In a recently-published research article (Liebler et al. 2017), we used a large, unique linked dataset from two U.S. Censuses (2000 and 2010) to study who had the same race/ethnicity response in both years and whose response changed from one year to the next. With over 160 million cases covering all U.S. race and ethnicity groups we found that 6.1% of people in the (not-nationally-representative) data had a different race or ethnic response in 2010 than they did in 2000.

These response changes represent changes between the federally-defined major race groups (multiple responses allowed in both years): white, black or African American (“black” here), American Indian or Alaska Native (“American Indian”), Asian, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander (“Pacific Islander”), or the residual category of Some Other Race. Or they were changes between the two defined ethnicity groups: Hispanic/Latino and non-Hispanic/Latino (“Hispanic” and “non-Hispanic”).We used strict case selection to assure that responses were given by the person or a household member (not allocated, imputed, gathered from a potentially unreliable source, or signaling an incorrect match)…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

America’s Churning Races: Race and Ethnicity Response Changes Between Census 2000 and the 2010 Census

Posted in Articles, Asian Diaspora, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2017-07-14 16:58Z by Steven

America’s Churning Races: Race and Ethnicity Response Changes Between Census 2000 and the 2010 Census

Demography
February 2017, Volume 54, Issue 1
pages 259–284
DOI: 10.1007/s13524-016-0544-0

Carolyn A. Liebler, Professor of Sociology
University of Minnesota

Sonya R. Porter
Center for Administrative Records Research and Applications
U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, Maryland

Leticia E. Fernandez
Center for Administrative Records Research and Applications
U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, Maryland

James M. Noon, Survey Statistician
Center for Administrative Records Research and Applications
U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, Maryland

Sharon R. Ennis, Statistician
Center for Administrative Records Research and Applications
U.S. Census Bureau, Suitland, Maryland

A person’s racial or ethnic self-identification can change over time and across contexts, which is a component of population change not usually considered in studies that use race and ethnicity as variables. To facilitate incorporation of this aspect of population change, we show patterns and directions of individual-level race and Hispanic response change throughout the United States and among all federally recognized race/ethnic groups. We use internal U.S. Census Bureau data from the 2000 and 2010 censuses in which responses have been linked at the individual level (N = 162 million). Approximately 9.8 million people (6.1%) in our data have a different race and/or Hispanic-origin response in 2010 than they did in 2000. Race response change was especially common among those reported as American Indian, Alaska Native, Native Hawaiian, Other Pacific Islander, in a multiple-race response group, or Hispanic. People reported as non-Hispanic white, black, or Asian in 2000 usually had the same response in 2010 (3%, 6%, and 9% of responses changed, respectively). Hispanic/non-Hispanic ethnicity responses were also usually consistent (13% and 1%, respectively, changed). We found a variety of response change patterns, which we detail. In many race/Hispanic response groups, we see population churn in the form of large countervailing flows of response changes that are hidden in cross-sectional data. We find that response changes happen across ages, sexes, regions, and response modes, with interesting variation across racial/ethnic categories. Researchers should address the implications of race and Hispanic-origin response change when designing analyses and interpreting results.

Read or purchase the article here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

One metric shows that race in America is about to experience a dramatic shift

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, United States on 2017-06-27 13:53Z by Steven

One metric shows that race in America is about to experience a dramatic shift

Quartz
2017-06-27

Dan Kopf, Reporter
San Francisco, California


Feel the demographic change. (Reuters/Lucy Nicholson)

The demographics of the United States are changing quickly, and there is no simpler way to understand that than to look at the most common age of each race and ethnic group.

The US Census Bureau recently released its estimates of the US population as of July 2016. Besides an estimate of the total population (325 million), the census also includes estimates of the number of people of every age within each race and ethnicity. For example, the census estimates that, as of July 2016, there were 976,288 Hispanic 15-year-olds in the country.

Jed Kolko, chief economist of jobs site Indeed, combed through this data and came away with a fascinating insight. He discovered huge variation in the most common age—more technically, the mode—between each major racial group in the US…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , ,

The Head of the Census Resigned. It Could Be as Serious as James Comey

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2017-05-14 19:20Z by Steven

The Head of the Census Resigned. It Could Be as Serious as James Comey

TIME
2017-05-12

Haley Sweetland Edwards


John Thompson, Director, U.S. Census Bureau
U.S. Census Bureau

In a week dominated by President Trump’s firing of FBI director James Comey, you could be forgiven for missing the imminent departure of another, less prominent federal official.

Yet the news this week that John H. Thompson, the director of the Census Bureau, has abruptly resigned is arguably as consequential to the future of our democracy. That’s because the Census Bureau, while less flashy than the FBI, plays a staggeringly important role in both U.S. elections and an array of state and federal government functions.

“At the very heart of the Census is nothing less than political power and money,” said Terri Ann Lowenthal, who served as the staff director of the House census oversight subcommittee before becoming a consultant on census policy and operational issues. “It is the basis, the very foundation, of our democracy and the Constitution’s promise of equal representation.”

The results of the decennial Census—the next will be in 2020—will determine how state and federal political districts are drawn; which Americans are “counted” for representation; and how federal dollars, many of which are allocated on a per capita basis, are spent…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Departure of U.S. Census director threatens 2020 count

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2017-05-11 02:01Z by Steven

Departure of U.S. Census director threatens 2020 count

Science
2017-05-09

Jeffrey Mervis


John Thompson will leave the Census Bureau on 30 June. U.S. Census Bureau

John Thompson is stepping down next month as director of the U.S. Census Bureau. His announcement today comes less than 1 week after a congressional spending panel grilled him about mounting problems facing the agency in preparing for the 2020 decennial census. And Thompson’s pending retirement is weighing heavily on the U.S. statistical community.

Thompson is leaving halfway through a 1-year extension of a term that expired last December. His departure will create what a 2011 law was expressly designed to avoid—a leadership vacuum during a crucial time in the 10-year life cycle of the census, the nation’s largest civilian undertaking. The immediate concern is who the Trump administration will appoint, and how soon it will act…

Ken Prewitt, who led the agency from 1998 to 2001, worries that a long delay in naming a well-qualified replacement for Thompson could be the first step of a long, steep decline in the quality of the federal statistic system, which spans 13 agencies. “That system is fragile, and it wouldn’t take much to damage it severely,” says Prewitt, a professor of social affairs at Columbia University. “My real fear is that they don’t care enough to do a good job with the 2020 census. And then after doing a bad job, they decide to let the private sector take over.”…

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Seeking better data on Hispanics, Census Bureau may change how it asks about race

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Latino Studies, Media Archive, United States on 2017-04-30 01:56Z by Steven

Seeking better data on Hispanics, Census Bureau may change how it asks about race

Pew Research Center
2017-04-20

D’Vera Cohn, Senior Writer/Editor

Federal officials are considering major changes in how they ask Americans about their race and ethnicity, with the goal of producing more accurate and reliable data in the 2020 census and beyond. Recently released Census Bureau research underscores an important reason why: Many Hispanics, who are the nation’s largest minority group, do not identify with the current racial categories.

Census officials say this is a problem because in order to obtain good data, they need to make sure people can match themselves to the choices they are offered. Census data on race and Hispanic origin are used to redraw congressional district boundaries and enforce voting and other civil rights laws, as well as in a wide variety of research, including Pew Research Center studies…

Read the entire aticle here.

Tags: , ,

I’m a bit brown. But in America I’m white. Not for much longer

Posted in Articles, Census/Demographics, Media Archive, Politics/Public Policy, United States on 2017-03-22 13:05Z by Steven

I’m a bit brown. But in America I’m white. Not for much longer

The Guardian
2017-03-21

Arwa Mahdawi


Colour coded … a large number of US citizens will have to check a new box on the census form if plans to redefine whiteness come to fruition. Photograph: Alamy Stock Photo

The US Census Bureau plans to redefine ‘white’ to exclude people with Middle Eastern and North African origins. It’s a reminder that the identity has always been fluid

We live in a weird time for whiteness. But, before I get into that, a small disclaimer. You may look at my name and worry that I am unqualified to speak about whiteness; I would like to set these doubts to rest and assure you that I myself am a white person. It’s true that, technically speaking, I’m a bit brown but, when it comes to my legal standing, I’m all white. Well, I’m white in America anyway. The US Census Bureau, you see, defines “white” as “a person having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa”. Being half-Palestinian and half-English I fall squarely into that box.

But I may not be able to hang out in that box much longer. There are plans afoot to add a new “Middle East/North Africa” category to the US census. After 70-plus years of having to tick “white” or “other” on administrative documents, people originating from the Middle East and North Africa may soon have their own category.

Whether our very own check box is a privilege or petrifying is still to be decided. Middle Easterners aren’t exactly persona particularly grata in the US right now. Identifying ourselves more explicitly to the government might not be the smartest move – particularly considering that, during the second world war, the US government used census data to send more than 100,000 Japanese Americans to internment camps

Read the entire article here.

Tags: , , ,