IPUMS USA: County Variable Name Changes

“What’s in a name? That which we call a COUNTYFIPS by any other name would still be accurate” ~ Steve Shakespeare (the lesser known, quantitative Shakespeare).

Couldn’t have said it better myself. Though, when you are sharing your variable names with tens of thousands of researchers who really just want their analysis to work you may want to be cautious about changing variable names. This is exactly the reason our (now re-named) COUNTY variable held onto that moniker for so long. And when you do change variable names you better try your hardest to let everyone know, so let’s start with that part.

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IPUMS DHS at Work | “Child Stunting: National Figures Conceal Subnational Heterogeneity”

While summary national-level statistics from sources such as the World Bank are a useful tool, these national-level figures may conceal great heterogeneity across subnational units such as provinces and large urban areas.  Such differences are displayed in the figures below, with data on the percentage of stunted children under age 5, nationally and by region within countries. For example, while 40 to 50 percent of Tanzanian children overall are stunted, the figures range from under 20 percent to 50 percent or more across Tanzanian regions.

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