Evaluating the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2005 State Population Projections

Jack Byerly , Pennsylvania State University

The U.S. Census Bureau’s most recent set of state-level population projections was prepared in 2005. The performance of these projections has not been formally evaluated against the results of the 2010 decennial census. I compare the 2005 state-level projections for 2010 against the results of the 2010 decennial census. The results show that all states were projected within 8% of their enumerated population, while the projection for the District of Columbia was approximately 11.8% lower than the census count. I also formally evaluate the projections using the mean absolute percentage error (MAPE) and mean algebraic percentage error (MALPE). These calculations enable comparison with earlier projections series to demonstrate the 2005 projections’ relative accuracy.

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 Presented in Session 3. Population, Development, & the Environment; Data & Methods; Applied Demography