Demographic Analysis (DA) is a method used to evaluate the quality of the census. We use current and historical vital records, data on international migration, and Medicare records to produce national estimates of the population on April 1 by age, sex, the DA race categories, and Hispanic origin. The DA population estimates are independent of the decennial census. The results are used to produce estimates of net coverage error, which are calculated as the percent difference between the census counts and the DA population estimates.
Traditionally, the DA estimates have been produced by sex and single year of age for the race categories Black and non-Black. Starting in 2010, the DA program produces estimates by Hispanic origin (Hispanic/Non-Hispanic) for a limited number of ages. New data sources, changes in the racial and ethnic make-up of the nation, and evolving patterns of international migration present both challenges and opportunities for DA.
The U.S. Census Bureau used DA to measure coverage in the 1990 Census. The 1990 Census total was 248.7 million while the DA estimate was 253.4 million. This implied a net undercount of 4.6 million or 1.85 percent.
Demographers external and internal to the Census Bureau have made contributions to Demographic Analysis.
What Do We Know About The Undercount of Children?
There is a pressing need for statistics to inform policy makers of the size and characteristics of the nation's children.
Estimates of Emigration of the Foreign-Born Population: 1980-1990
This paper attempts to develop estimates of emigration of the foreign-born population at the national level based on the 1980 and 1990 censuses.
Population Coverage in the 1990 Census Based on Demographic Analysis
This article presents estimates of net coverage of the national population in the 1990 census, based on the method of demographic analysis.
Himes, Christine L., and Clifford C. Clogg. "An overview of demographic analysis as a method for evaluating census coverage in the United States." Population index (1992): 587-607.
Woodrow-Lafield, K.A. An analysis of net immigration in census coverage evaluation. Population Research and Policy Review 14, 173–204 (1995).