Controversy and litigation surround the plan to use dual-systems
estimation and sampling for the U.S. 2000 census. This article analyzes
this conflict in terms of the history and technical development of
the census, and attempts to create a basis for its resolution.
Scott, Susan, 1953-
Duncan, C. J. (Christopher John).
Infants -- England, North West -- Mortality -- History.
Malnutrition -- England, North West -- History.
Pregnancy -- England, North West -- History.
Changes with time in endogenous and exogenous infant mortality in
a community in preindustrial Northwest England suggest that the
population was living under marginal conditions with poor nutritive
standards. Overall, farming practices and the quality of the diet did
not improve until 1750 when a reduction in infant mortality apparently
led to a population boom. Bourgeois-Pichat plots of infant mortality were
different in the three social classes that have been identified. The
clear breaks in the plots for the elites and tradesmen classes probably
reflected the different nutrition of mothers before and during
pregnancy, as well as the different infant feeding practices before and
The age returns in the British-administered Census of India between 1871
and 1931 were problematic. Owing to low levels of numeracy and poor
records of births and deaths in India, census officials resorted
to a number of technical innovations to generate useful statistical
regularities out of the imperfect data. In the process, they came to
realize that even so putatively a "universal" category as age might be
impossible to determine accurately in a culture that lacked certain
assumptions about time, and in a state that lacked the resources to
tabulate when people began and ended their lives.
The threat of a Malthusian crisis in the late-eighteenth-century Habsburg
monarchy is evident from the decline in physical stature of the male
population. This evidence is consistent with diminishing returns to labor
on account of the acceleration in population growth, with a concomitant
decline in real wages. An alternative hypothesis--that heights decreased,
not because nutrient consumption fell, but because work effort, and hence
energy expenditures, increased, leaving less calories available for the
biological growth process--is found to be unsubstantiated on the basis
of the available evidence.