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For NSF Graduate Research Fellows in Statistics, Mathematics, and Computing

U.S. Census Bureau at a Glance


Census Headquarters

The U.S. Census Bureau serves as the leading source of quality data about the nation's people, economy, and places. The Census Bureau honors privacy, protects confidentiality, shares its expertise globally, and conducts work openly. The Census Bureau is guided on this mission by its strong and capable workforce, its readiness to innovate, and its abiding commitment to its customers.


While the first census was taken in 1790 and every 10 years thereafter, the Census Bureau traces its roots to 1840, when the Census Act authorized establishing a centralized Census Office during each enumeration. In 1902, the Census Office became a permanent organization within the Department of Interior. In 1903, the office was renamed the Bureau of the Census and moved to the new Department of Commerce and Labor.

Programs & Activities

The Census Bureau is the largest statistical agency of the federal government. Its work has expanded commensurate with the nation's population and economy, keeping pace with the demand for current facts and figures. Activities involve statistical research and methodology, survey design, questionnaire design, geographic infrastructure updates, data collection, processing, and dissemination. The Census Bureau's many programs include censuses, sample surveys, estimates, and projections. These are invaluable planning tools for citizens, businesses and government officials. Federal law protects the confidentiality of all the information the Census Bureau collects.

Center for Statistical Research and Methodology

Research and Methodology

The Center for Statistical Research and Methodology (CSRM) conducts research on statistical design, modeling, and analysis methods for the Census Bureau’s data collection, analysis, and dissemination programs, in collaboration with colleagues in the Research and Methodology Directorate, other directorates, and outside researchers. Specific areas of statistical methodology research include: missing data, edit, and imputation; record linkage; small area estimation; survey sampling: estimation & modeling; statistical computing & software; time series & seasonal adjustment; and experimentation, simulation, and modeling. Output of our efforts include new statistical methods and associated software. Recent interest aims at statistical methodology research for integrating data from censuses, probability samples, administrative records, and Big Data.

Staff interact with academic, government, and other researchers in order to enhance CSRM statistical activities at the Census Bureau, through active participation in professional meetings, conferences, and symposia, through the preparation and dissemination of discussion papers, and through the publication in professional journals of the findings of research conducted or sponsored by CSRM.

View the PDF below for information on Statistical Expertise & General Research Topics and projects in the Census Bureau's Center for Statistical Research and Methodology.

NSF Graduate Fellows should indicate in their GRIP Application which of the broad statistical research topic areas they wish to join if selected for GRIP. Initially, periods of internships are primarily during the summer months. For questions, please contact: Tommy Wright; Chief, Center for Statistical Research and Methodology;; and (301) 763-1702.

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