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Mark D. Hayward, Director 305 E. 23rd Street, Stop G1800 78712-1699 • 512-471-5514

PRC Trainee Isaac Sasson Wins Poster Award at 2012 PAA

Posted: May 9, 2012
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PRC Trainee Isaac Sasson won a Poster Award for his poster, "Non-poor population growth as a population characteristic: U.S. 1990-2010," with co-author Arthur Sakamoto, at this year's Population Association of America annual meeting in San Francisco.

Paper Abstract:  Traditional measures of poverty are informative in indicating the degree of economic deprivation in a population at a cross-sectional point in time, but they disregard any growth in the size of the non-poor population. We develop a measure of non-poor population growth and argue that it constitutes a useful indicator of an important demographic dynamic. We illustrate our approach with an analysis of the U.S. states using Census data from 1990 and 2000, as well as annual data from the American Community Survey from 2001 to 2010. The results indicate that the extent to which the non-poor population increased across states is uncorrelated with the initial poverty rate as conventionally measured. Broken down by nativity, the findings further show that some states with official poverty rates above the national average (e.g., Arizona, Georgia, and Texas) nonetheless had some of the highest rates of non-poor population growth among low-skilled immigrants. By contrast, other states with official poverty rates below the national average (e.g., Connecticut, New Hampshire, and Vermont) had very low rates of non-poor population growth among low-skilled immigrants. These findings suggest that low initial poverty rates do not necessarily contribute so substantially to the alleviation of global poverty through the immigration of low-skilled persons from less developed nations.

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