TABLE 5-2 Net Census Undercount, by Sex and Age, as Measured zby Demographic Analysis and Post-Enumeration Surveys, 1990 and 2000 (in percent)

 

1990

2000

 

Demographic Analysisa

 

Category

Demographic Analysis

PES

Base

Alternate

A.C.E.

Male

 

Total

2.79

1.93

–0.13

0.91

1.51

0–17 years

2.16

3.17

–0.51

0.27

1.53

18–29 years

2.15

3.16

–2.57

0.34

3.45

30–49 years

3.83

1.85

1.28

2.26

1.81

50 years and over

2.72

–0.57

0.15

0.29

–0.24

Female

 

Total

0.94

1.25

–1.16

–0.25

0.79

0–17 years

2.43

3.20

0.06

0.87

1.54

18–29 years

0.64

2.81

–3.07

–0.66

2.11

30–49 years

0.50

0.88

–0.91

0.04

0.95

50 years and over

0.24

–1.20

–1.43

–1.28

–0.76

Total

1.85

1.58

–0.65

0.32

1.15

NOTES: Minus sign (–) indicates a net overcount of the population. Net undercount is the difference between the estimate (A.C.E., PES, or demographic analysis) and the census divided by the estimate. Total population includes household and group quarters populations; the census count of group quarters is added to the A.C.E. for comparability with DA.

aBase is the originally produced DA estimate which includes an allowance for 6 million undocumented immigrants; alternate is a DA estimate that arbitrarily doubles the flow of undocumented immigrants between 1990 and 2000, allowing for 8.7 million undocumented immigrants total.

SOURCE: Robinson (2001a:Tables A, 5).

There are no direct, comparative measures for evaluating the net immigration component, especially the undocumented component, of DA. At present, a “residual” process is used to estimate the number of undocumented immigrants: that is, an estimate of the expected number of foreign-born people legally residing in the country is derived from reported data on legal immigration, and this figure is compared with the number of foreign-born people reported in the census long-form sample or, more recently, in the Current Population Survey (CPS).5 The difference between the two represents the number of undocumented immigrants included in the census (or CPS). The computations are carried out in some detail by country (or region) of birth and year of entry, which is believed to add to the validity to the estimates. (Data on country of birth and year of immigration are now included regularly in the CPS so that the computations can be carried out more frequently, perhaps adding some stability in the estimates over time.)

5  

The census long-form sample included about 17–18 million households in 1990 and 2000; the CPS includes about 50,000 households each month.



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