The United States Census Bureau (USCB; officially the Bureau of the Census, as defined in Title U.S. Federal Statistical System, responsible for producing data about the American people and economy. The Census Bureau is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce and its director is appointed by the President of the United States.) is a principal agency of the
The Census Bureau's primary mission is conducting the U.S. Census every ten years, which allocates the seats of the U.S. House of Representatives to the states based on their population. The Bureau's various censuses and surveys help allocate over $400 billion in federal funds every year and it helps states, local communities, and businesses make informed decisions. The information provided by the census informs decisions on where to build and maintain schools, hospitals, transportation infrastructure, and police and fire departments.
In addition to the decennial census, the Census Bureau continually conducts dozens of other censuses and surveys, including the American Community Survey, the U.S. Economic Census, and the Current Population Survey. Furthermore, economic and foreign trade indicators released by the federal government typically contain data produced by the Census Bureau.
|Bureau of the Census|
|Formed||July 1, 1902|
|Headquarters||Suitland, Maryland, U.S.|
|Annual budget||US$1.5 billion (2017)|
US$1.5 billion (2018)
US$3.8 billion (est. 2019)
|Parent agency||Department of Commerce|
Article One of the United States Constitution (section II) directs the population be enumerated at least once every ten years and the resulting counts used to set the number of members from each state in the House of Representatives and, by extension, in the Electoral College. The Census Bureau now conducts a full population count every 10 years in years ending with a zero and uses the term "decennial" to describe the operation. Between censuses, the Census Bureau makes population estimates and projections.
In addition, Census data directly affects how more than $400 billion per year in federal and state funding is allocated to communities for neighborhood improvements, public health, education, transportation and more. The Census Bureau is mandated with fulfilling these obligations: the collecting of statistics about the nation, its people, and economy. The Census Bureau's legal authority is codified in Title 13 of the United States Code.
The Census Bureau also conducts surveys on behalf of various federal government and local government agencies on topics such as employment, crime, health, consumer expenditures, and housing. Within the bureau, these are known as "demographic surveys" and are conducted perpetually between and during decennial (10-year) population counts. The Census Bureau also conducts economic surveys of manufacturing, retail, service, and other establishments and of domestic governments.
Between 1790 and 1840, the census was taken by marshals of the judicial districts. The Census Act of 1840 established a central office which became known as the Census Office. Several acts followed that revised and authorized new censuses, typically at the 10-year intervals. In 1902, the temporary Census Office was moved under the Department of Interior, and in 1903 it was renamed the Census Bureau under the new Department of Commerce and Labor. The department was intended to consolidate overlapping statistical agencies, but Census Bureau officials were hindered by their subordinate role in the department.
An act in 1920 changed the date and authorized manufacturing censuses every two years and agriculture censuses every 10 years. In 1929, a bill was passed mandating the House of Representatives be reapportioned based on the results of the 1930 Census. In 1954, various acts were codified into Title 13 of the US Code.
By law, the Census Bureau must count everyone and submit state population totals to the U.S. President by December 31 of any year ending in a zero. States within the Union receive the results in the spring of the following year.
The United States Census Bureau defines four statistical regions, with nine divisions. The Census Bureau regions are "widely used...for data collection and analysis". The Census Bureau definition is pervasive.
Regional divisions used by the United States Census Bureau:
Many federal, state, local and tribal governments use census data to:
The United States Census Bureau is committed to confidentiality, and guarantees non-disclosure of any addresses or personal information related to individuals or establishments. Title 13 of the U.S. Code establishes penalties for the disclosure of this information. All Census employees must sign an affidavit of non-disclosure prior to employment.
The Bureau cannot share responses, addresses or personal information with anyone including United States or foreign government and law enforcement agencies such as the IRS or the FBI or Interpol. "Providing quality data, for public good—while respecting individual privacy and, at the same time, protecting confidentiality—is the Census Bureau's core responsibility", "Keeping the public's trust is critical to the Census's ability to carry out the mission as the leading source of quality data about the Nation's people and economy." Only after 72 years does the information collected become available to other agencies or the general public.
Despite these guarantees of confidentiality, the Census Bureau has some history of disclosures to other government agencies. In 1918, the Census Bureau released individual information regarding several hundred young men to the Justice Department and Selective Service system for the purpose of prosecutions for draft evasion. During World War II, the United States Census Bureau assisted the government's Japanese American internment efforts by providing confidential neighborhood information on Japanese-Americans. The Bureau's role was denied for decades but was finally proven in 2007.
United States census data are valuable for the country's political parties; Democrats and Republicans are highly interested in knowing accurate number of persons in their respective districts. These insights are often linked to financial and economic strategies that are central to federal, state and city investments for locations of particular populations. Such apportionments are designed to distribute political power across neutral spatial allocations; however, "because so much is at stake, the census also runs the risk of being politicized."
Such political tensions highlight the complexity of identity and classification; some argue that unclear results from the population data "is due to distortions brought about by political pressures." One frequently used example includes ambiguous ethnic counts, which often involves underenumeration and/or undercounting of minority populations. Ideas about race, ethnicity and identity have also evolved in the United States, and such changes warrant examination of how these shifts have impacted the accuracy of census data over time.
The United States Census Bureau began pursuing technological innovations to improve the precision of its census data collection in the 1980s. Robert W. Marx, the Chief of the Geography Division of the USCB teamed up with the US Geological Survey and oversaw the creation of the Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing (TIGER) database system. Census officials were able to evaluate more sophisticated and detailed results that the TIGER system produced; furthermore, TIGER data are also available to the public. And while the TIGER system does not directly amass demographic data, as a geographic information system (GIS), it can be used to merge demographics to conduct more accurate geospatial and mapping analysis.
The Census Bureau distributes data it collects via censuses and surveys on its American FactFinder website.
A survey is a method of collecting and analyzing social, economic, and geographic data. It provides information about the conditions of the United States, states, and counties. Throughout the decade between censuses, the bureau conducts surveys to produce a general view and comprehensive study of the United States' social and economic conditions.
Staff from the Current Surveys Program conduct over 130 ongoing and special surveys about people and their characteristics. A network of professional field representatives gathers information from a sample of households, responding to questions about employment, consumer expenditures, health, housing, and other topics. Surveys conducted between decades:
The Census Bureau collects information in many other surveys and provides the data to the survey sponsor for release. These sponsors include:
Since 1903, the official census-taking agency of the United States government has been the Bureau of the Census. The Census Bureau is headed by a Director, assisted by a Deputy Director and an Executive Staff composed of the associate directors.
The Census Bureau has had headquarters in Suitland, Maryland, since 1942. A new headquarters complex was completed in 2007 and supports over 4,000 employees. The Bureau operates regional offices in 6 cities: New York City, Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta, Denver, and Los Angeles. The National Processing Center is in Jeffersonville, Indiana. Additional temporary processing facilities facilitate the decennial census, which employs more than a million people. The cost of the 2000 Census was $4.5 billion. During the years just prior to the decennial census, parallel census offices, known as "Regional Census Centers" are opened in the field office cities. The decennial operations are carried out from these facilities. The Regional Census Centers oversee the openings and closings of smaller "Area Census Offices" within their collection jurisdictions. The estimated cost of the 2010 Census is $14.7 billion.
On January 1, 2013, the Census Bureau was to consolidate its 12 regional offices into 6. Increasing costs of data collection, changes in survey management tools such as laptops and the increasing use of multi-modal surveys (i.e. internet, telephone, and in-person) has led the Census Bureau to consolidate. The remaining regional offices will be in: New York City, Philadelphia, Chicago, Atlanta, Denver, and Los Angeles.
The Census Bureau also runs the Census Information Center cooperative program that involves 58 "national, regional, and local non-profit organizations". The CIC program aims to represent the interests of underserved communities.
The 1890 census was the first to use the electric tabulating machines invented by Herman Hollerith. For 1890–1940 details, see Truesdell, Leon E. (1965). The Development of Punch Card Tabulation in the Bureau of the Census, 1890-1940: With outlines of actual tabulation programs. US GPO. In 1946, knowing of the Bureau's funding of Hollerith and, later, Powers, John Mauchly approached the Bureau about early funding for UNIVAC development. A UNIVAC I computer was accepted by the Bureau in 1951.
Historically, the census information was gathered by census takers going door-to-door collecting information in a ledger. Beginning in 1970 information was gathered via mailed forms. To reduce paper usage, reduce payroll expense and acquire the most comprehensive list of addresses ever compiled, 500,000 handheld computers (HHCs) (specifically designed, single purpose devices) were used for the first time in 2009 during the address canvassing portion of the 2010 Decennial Census Project. Projected savings were estimated to be over $1 billion.
The HHC was manufactured by Harris Corporation, an established Department of Defense contractor, via a controversial contract with the Department of Commerce. Secured access via a fingerprint swipe guaranteed only the verified user could access the unit. A GPS capacity was integral to the daily address management and the transfer of gathered information. Of major importance was the security and integrity of the populace's private information.
Enumerators (information gatherers) that had operational problems with the device understandably made negative reports. During the 2009 Senate confirmation hearings for Robert Groves, President Obama's Census Director appointee, there was much mention of contracting problems but very little criticism of the units. In rural areas, the sparsity of cell phone towers caused problems with data transmission to and from the HHC. Since the units were updated nightly with important changes and reprogramming, operator implementation of proper procedure was imperative. Dramatic dysfunction and delays occurred if the units were not put into sleep mode overnight.
Americans are nationals and citizens of the United States of America. Although nationals and citizens make up the majority of Americans, some dual citizens, expatriates, and permanent residents may also claim American nationality. The United States is home to people of many different ethnic origins. As a result, American culture and law does not equate nationality with race or ethnicity, but with citizenship and permanent allegiance.English-speakers, and even speakers of many other languages, typically use the term "American" to exclusively mean people of the United States; this developed from its original use to differentiate English people of the American colonies from English people of England. The word "American" can also refer to people from the Americas in general (see names for United States citizens).Brighton, Colorado
The City of Brighton is the Home Rule Municipality in Adams and Weld counties that is the county seat of Adams County, Colorado, United States. The United States Census Bureau estimates that the city population was 35,719 in 2013.Carroll County, Illinois
Carroll County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. As of the 2010 census, the population was 15,387. Its county seat is Mount Carroll.Census-designated place
A census-designated place (CDP) is a concentration of population defined by the United States Census Bureau for statistical purposes only. CDPs have been used in each decennial census since 1980 as the counterparts of incorporated places, such as self-governing cities, towns, and villages, for the purposes of gathering and correlating statistical data. CDPs are populated areas that generally include one officially designated but currently unincorporated small community, for which the CDP is named, plus surrounding inhabited countryside of varying dimensions and, occasionally, other, smaller unincorporated communities as well. CDPs include small rural communities, colonias located along the U.S. border with Mexico, and unincorporated resort and retirement communities and their environs.The boundaries of a CDP have no legal status. Thus, they may not always correspond with the local understanding of the area or community with the same name. However, criteria established for the 2010 Census require that a CDP name "be one that is recognized and used in daily communication by the residents of the community" (not "a name developed solely for planning or other purposes") and recommend that a CDP's boundaries be mapped based on the geographic extent associated with inhabitants' regular use of the named place.The Census Bureau states that census-designated places are not considered incorporated places and that it includes only census-designated places in its city population list for Hawaii because that state has no incorporated cities. In addition, census city lists from 2007 included Arlington County, Virginia's CDP in the list with the incorporated places, but since 2010, only the Urban Honolulu CDP, Hawaii representing the historic core of Honolulu, Hawaii, is shown in the city and town estimates.Census county division
A Census County Division (CCD) is a subdivision of a county used by the United States Census Bureau for the purpose of presenting statistical data. A CCD is a relatively permanent statistical area delineated cooperatively by the Census Bureau and state and local government authorities. CCDs are defined in 21 states that do not have well-defined and stable minor civil divisions (MCDs), such as townships, with local governmental purposes, or where the MCDs are deemed to be "unsatisfactory for the collection, presentation, and analysis of census statistics".
CCDs are not governmental units and have no legal or governmental functions. Their boundaries usually follow visible features, such as roads, railroads, streams, power transmission lines, or mountain ridges, and coincide with the boundaries of census tracts. CCDs do not span county lines. Each CCD is given a name based on the name of the largest population center in the area, a prominent geographic feature, the county name, or another well-known local name that identifies its location.CCDs were first implemented for tabulation of 1950 Census data from the state of Washington. As of the 2010 census, a total of 5,191 CCDs were defined in 20 states.
North Dakota briefly adopted CCDs for the 1970 Census, but soon returned to using MCDs for subsequent censuses. The main reason for abandoning CCDs was financial. As legal units of local government, MCDs could qualify for federal revenue sharing funds, while purely statistical areas like CCDs did not. In 2008, Tennessee changed from using CCDs to using MCDs, leaving 20 states using CCDs as of the 2010 census.Census division
Census division is an official term in Canada and the United States. The census divisions of Canada are second-level census geographic unit, below provinces and territories, and above "census subdivisions" and "dissemination areas". In provinces where they exist, the census division may correspond to a county, a regional municipality or a regional district.In the United States, the Census Bureau divides the country into four census regions and nine census divisions. The bureau also divides counties (or county equivalents) into either census county divisions or minor civil division, depending on the state. The American state of Alaska does not include counties, instead being divided into 19 boroughs and 10 census divisions.Clay County, Illinois
Clay County is a county located in the U.S. state of Illinois. As of the 2010 census, the population was 13,815. Its county seat is Louisville.In 1950, the U.S. Census Bureau placed the mean center of U.S. population in Clay County.Dodge County, Georgia
Dodge County is a county located in the central portion of the U.S. state of Georgia. As of 2010, the population was 21,796. The county seat is Eastman. Dodge County lies in the Historic South and Black Belt region of Georgia, an area that was devoted to cotton production in the antebellum years. It has significant historic buildings and plantations, has a substantial African-American population, and shows cultural aspects of the South.Family (US Census)
A family is defined by the United States Census Bureau for statistical purposes as "a group of two people or more (one of whom is the householder) related by birth, marriage, or adoption and residing together; all such people (including related subfamily members) are considered as members of one family."
A family household is more inclusive, consisting of "a household maintained by a householder who is in a family (as defined above), and includes any unrelated people (unrelated subfamily members and/or secondary individuals) who may be residing there."In 2014 the US Census Bureau began including same-sex marriages in their counts of families and family households. Prior to this, they were counted as cohabiting partners and thus not considered to form a family.Hence, households consisting of grandparents and grandchildren without the intervening generation are not "families".Micropolitan statistical area
United States micropolitan statistical areas (µSA, where the initial Greek letter mu represents "micro-"), as defined by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), are labor market areas in the United States centered on an urban cluster (urban area) with a population of at least 10,000 but fewer than 50,000 people. The micropolitan area designation was created in 2003. Like the better-known Metropolitan Statistical Areas, a micropolitan area is a geographic entity used for statistical purposes based on counties and county equivalents. The OMB has identified 536 micropolitan areas in the United States.
The term "micropolitan" gained currency in the 1990s to describe growing population centers in the United States that are removed from larger cities, in some cases by 100 miles (160 km) or more.
Micropolitan cities do not have the economic or political importance of large cities, but are nevertheless significant centers of population and production, drawing workers and shoppers from a wide local area. Because the designation is based on the core urban cluster's population and not on that of the whole area, some micropolitan areas are actually larger than some metropolitan areas. For example, the Ottawa–Peru, IL Micropolitan Statistical Area had a 2010 census population of 154,908. That would put its total population ahead of roughly 100 individual locations classified as a Metropolitan Statistical Area in 2010. The largest of the areas, around Claremont and Lebanon, New Hampshire, had a population in excess of 218,000 in 2010; Claremont's population was only 13,355 in that year's census, and Lebanon's population was only 13,151.Minor civil division
A minor civil division (MCD) is a term used by the United States Census Bureau for primary governmental and/or administrative divisions of a county, such as a civil township, precinct, or magisterial district. As of 2010, MCDs exist in 29 states and the District of Columbia. In New York and New England, they are towns. In Puerto Rico the MCD is called a barrio-pueblo.As of 1990, all or many of the MCDs in 20 states were general-purpose governmental units: Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wisconsin. Most of these MCDs are legally designated as towns or townships. The type of government may range from inoperative, to weak governmental authority, to incorporated municipalities. Since MCDs appear in a different category than incorporated places, this has caused some confusion in states where the MCDs have strong governments, such as in Michigan, the New England states, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania.
In states that do not have MCDs, mostly in the South and the West, the Census Bureau designates Census County Divisions (CCDs). In states that use MCDs, when any portion of the state is not covered by an MCD, the Census Bureau creates additional entities as unorganized territories, that it treats as equivalent to MCDs for statistical purposes. For several decennial censuses prior to the 2010 census, 28 states used MCDs, but in 2008, Tennessee changed from CCDs to MCDs, bringing the total number of MCD states to 29.In states that use MCDs and border a coast, territorial sea, or the Great Lakes, the Census Bureau assigns a default FIPS county subdivision code of 00000 and an ANSI code of eight zeroes to areas of water that are not legally included in a county subdivision.Northeastern United States
The Northeastern United States, also referred to as simply the Northeast, is a geographical region of the United States bordered to the north by Canada, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the south by the Southern United States, and to the west by the Midwestern United States. The Northeast is one of the four regions defined by the United States Census Bureau for the collection and analysis of statistics.The Census Bureau-defined region has a total area of 181,324 sq mi (469,630 km2) with 162,257 sq mi (420,240 km2) of that being land mass. Although it lacks a unified cultural identity, the Northeastern region is the nation's most economically developed, densely populated, and culturally diverse region. Of the nation's four census regions, the Northeast is the second most urban, with 85 percent of its population residing in urban areas, led by the West with 90 percent.Pennsylvania metropolitan areas
Pennsylvania has fourteen metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) and four combined statistical areas (CSAs), as defined by the United States Census Bureau. A map of the Pennsylvania MSAs is available from the Census Bureau. As of 2016 Philadelphia is the seventh largest United States metropolitan area. In 2003, the U.S. Census introduced "metropolitan divisions" within some metropolitan areas. Pennsylvania has one metropolitan division within the Philadelphia–Camden–Wilmington MSA.
The following sortable table lists the 18 MSAs of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania with the following information:
The MSA rank by population as of July 1, 2017, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau
The MSA name as designated by the United States Office of Management and Budget
The MSA population as of July 1, 2017, as estimated by the United States Census Bureau
The MSA population as of April 1, 2010, as enumerated by the 2010 United States Census
The percent MSA population change from April 1, 2010, to July 1, 2017
The combined statistical area (CSA) if the MSA is a componentPlace (United States Census Bureau)
The United States Census Bureau defines a place as a concentration of population which has a name, is locally recognized, and is not part of any other place. A place typically has a residential nucleus and a closely spaced street pattern, and it frequently includes commercial property and other urban land uses. A place may be an incorporated place (a self-governing city, town, or village) or it may be a census-designated place (CDP). Incorporated places are defined by the laws of the states in which they are contained. The Census Bureau delineates CDPs. A small settlement in the open countryside or the densely settled fringe of a large city may not be a place as defined by the Census Bureau. As of the 1990 Census, only 26% of the people in the United States lived outside of places.Population Estimates Program
The Population Estimates Program (PEP) is a program of the US Census Bureau that publishes annual population estimates and estimates of birth, death, and international migration rates for people in the United States. In addition to publishing those aggregate estimates for the entire country, the program also publishes those yearly estimates by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin at the national, state, county and city and town level. By doing so, the Population Estimates Program provides up-to-date information on how the size and distribution of the US population has changed each year since the most recent 10-year US Census.The estimates produced by the Population Estimates Program are used in determining how federal funds should be allocated throughout the United States. The annual population estimates are also used as controls for the American Community Survey and the Current population survey (US), which in turn measure diverse demographic data on social, economic and housing characteristics of people in the United States.The basic procedure the Population Estimates Program uses to measure population is to take the updated population count reported by the last US Census, plus the number of births to US resident women, minus the number of deaths of US residents, plus the net number of international migrants. Estimates for the number of US resident births and deaths are based on data on birth certificates and death certificates provided by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). Estimates for net international migration are based on information from the American Community Survey, NCHS, and the previous census.South Asian Americans
South Asian Americans are often considered to include people who themselves or their ancestors migrated from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Following is the list of South Asian diasporas living in the USA arranged according to their 2017 population estimated by United States Census Bureau.
Indian Americans (4,402,362)
Indo-Caribbean Americans (232,817)
Indo-Fijian Americans (30,890)
Pakistani Americans (544,640)
Bangladeshi Americans (185,622)
Nepalese Americans (182,385)
Sri Lankan Americans (52,448)
Bhutanese Americans (26,845)
Maldivian AmericanTurner County, Georgia
Turner County is a county located in the south central portion of the U.S. state of Georgia. As of the 2010 census, the population was 8,930. The county seat is Ashburn. The county was created on August 18, 1905, and named for Henry Gray Turner, U.S. representative and Georgia state Supreme Court justice.Unorganized territory
In the United States, an unorganized territory is a region of land without a "normally" constituted system of government. This does not mean that the territory has no government at all or that it is unclaimed territory. In practice, such territories are always sparsely populated.
Historically, the term "unorganized territory" was applied to an area in which there was no effective government control of affairs on a day-to-day basis, such as the former U.S. territories where the government exerted only transient control when its forces were actually present. In modern usage it indicates an area in which local government does not exist, or exists only in embryonic form. However the area is still, at least in theory, governed by the nation of which it forms part, or by a smaller unit of that nation.
These lightly governed regions were common in the 19th century during the growth of United States. Large tracts such as the Louisiana Territory, Missouri Territory and the Oregon Country were established by Congress. Later, a portion of a territory would organize and achieve the requirements for statehood, leaving the remainder "unorganized".ZIP Code Tabulation Area
ZIP Code Tabulation Areas (ZCTAs) are statistical entities developed by the United States Census Bureau for tabulating summary statistics. These were introduced with the Census 2000 and continued with the 2010 Census. This new entity was developed to overcome the difficulties in precisely defining the land area covered by each ZIP code. Defining the extent of an area is necessary in order to tabulate census data for that area.
ZCTAs are generalized area representations of the United States Postal Service (USPS) ZIP code service areas, but are not the same as ZIP codes. Individual USPS ZIP codes can cross state, place, county, census tract, census block group and census block boundaries, so the Census Bureau asserts that "there is no correlation between ZIP codes and Census Bureau geography". Moreover, the USPS frequently realigns, merges, or splits ZIP codes to meet changing needs. These changes are usually not reflected in the annual TIGER releases. Each ZCTA is constructed by aggregating the Census 2010 blocks whose addresses use a given ZIP code. In assembling census statistical units to create ZCTAs, the Census Bureau took the ZIP code used by the majority of addresses in each census unit at the time the data was compiled. As a result, some addresses end up with a ZCTA code that is different from their ZIP code. ZCTAs are not developed for ZIP codes that comprise only a small number of addresses. Several ZCTAs represent ZIPs that no longer exist due to realignment by the USPS.
There are approximately 42,000 ZIP Codes and 32,000 ZCTAs. The reason that there is not one ZCTA for every ZIP Code is that PO Boxes are excluded in ZCTAs, since only populated areas are included in the Census data.
|Deputy Secretary of Commerce|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere|
|Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology|
As defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, the principal agencies of the Federal Statistical System have statistical activities as their core mission and conduct much of the government’s statistical work.