Improving the accuracy of intercensal estimates and postcensal projections of the civilian noninstitutional population: a parameterization of institutional prevalence rates.
The authors first note that current official U.S. population estimates and projections are based on the assumption that certain characteristics of the institutionalized population remain constant between censuses. The article "examines the empirical validity of this assumption by using data from the decennial censuses for 1940-1980 and, in light of substantial decade to decade changes in the age patterns of the institutional proportions for sex- and race-specific populations, seeks to develop alternative methods." As part of these alternative methods, "parametric curves are fit to the age-specific institutional proportions for each population for each decade. A study of the observed historical variation in the parameters of these curves then leads to some suggestions about how their shapes can be estimated between censuses and projected beyond the latest available census to provide more accurate estimates and projections of the civilian noninstitutional population." This is a revised version of a paper originally presented at the 1984 Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America (see Population Index, Vol. 50, No. 3, Fall 1984, p. 439).
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