The difference between alternative averages

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Background: Demographers have long been interested in how compositional change, e.g., change in age structure, affects population averages. Objective: We want to deepen understanding of how compositional change affects population averages. Results: The difference between two averages of a variable, calculated using alternative weighting functions, equals the covariance between the variable and the ratio of the weighting functions, divided by the average of the ratio. We compare weighted and unweighted averages and also provide examples of use of the relationship in analyses of fertility and mortality. Comments: Other uses of covariances in formal demography are worth exploring. © 2012 James W. Vaupel & Zhen Zhang.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Vaupel, JW; Zhang, Z

Published Date

  • December 6, 2012

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 27 /

Start / End Page

  • 419 - 428

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1435-9871

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.4054/DemRes.2012.27.15

Citation Source

  • Scopus