Category: Demography

Resource Category Topic Type
Population, Greenspace, and Development
An ongoing concern in both urban and rural America is the tradeoff between residential and commercial development and the conservation of forestland, shrublands, and grasslands, commonly referred to as greenspace. As communities develop, adding schools, housing, infrastructure, and the commercial space needed for an expanding population and economy, greenspace remains critical because it contributes to air and water purification, storm abatement, and enhanced human health and quality of life
Community, Environment, and Climate Change, Demography Community Development, Demography, Environment Publication
Red Rural, Blue Rural
Political commentators routinely treat rural America as an undifferentiated bastion of strength for Republicans. In fact, rural America is a deceptively simple term describing a diverse collection of places encompassing nearly 75 percent of the U.S. land area and 50 million people. Voting trends in this vast area are far from monolithic. Republican presidential candidates have generally done well in rural America, but there are important enclaves of Democratic strength there as well. In “battleground” states, these rural differences may have a significant impact on tightly contested elections. Rural Is Red With Pockets of Blue The political divisions between urban and rural America are well documented. Democrats count on a strong performance in cities to offset a poor performance outside of them. The political divisions within rural America are less well understood. The growing political diversity of rural America is evident when counties dominated by the old and new rural economy are compared. For instance, voters who reside in areas dominated by the “old rural economy,” exemplified by farming, strongly favor Republican presidential candidates. In contrast, rural areas dominated by the “new rural economy,” based on recreation, amenities, and services, have become critical pockets of strength for Democratic presidential candidates. These partisan differences remain even after controlling for demographic factors and the North–South split.
Demography Demography, Politics and Elections, Rural Publication
Rural America Growing Again Due to Migration Gains
For the first six years of this decade, rural America experienced overall population loss for the first time in history. New Census Bureau estimates suggest that last year overall growth accelerated in nonmetropolitan America where 46.1 million people reside.
Demography Demography Publication
Rural America in the 21st Century: Perspectives from the Field (Report to the Rural Assembly)
Rural America in the twenty-first century must develop new relationships and new ways of doing things to ensure an economically prosperous, socially just, and environmentally healthy future. Tapping into the resourcefulness and creativity of rural people will be essential in addressing this challenge. However, they cannot do it alone. Rural communities need critical infrastructure, investment, capital, and services. The overlapping forces shaping rural America–demographic transitions, economic changes, the legacy of chronic underinvestment in community institutions, and environmental factors—present challenges and opportunities. With the voices and strategies of rural Americans in hand, the National Rural Assembly can now move forward toward this vision for a twenty-first century rural America.
Demography, Vulnerable Families Research Program Community, Demography, Economic Development, Environment, Rural Publication
Rural Areas Risk Being Overlooked in 2010 Census
This issue brief describes how the census is conducted in rural areas, identifies some of the most difficult rural areas to count, and highlights what organizations are doing to ensure a more accurate census count in rural America. It also points out that undercounting by the census can lead to communities not receiving a fair share of federal funding.
Demography Demography, Rural Publication
Rural Children Are More Likely to Live in Cohabiting-Couple Households
As cohabiting increases nationwide, new data show that the growing rate of children in these households is most pronounced in rural areas. This brief analyzes recent U.S. Census Bureau data to explore these trends and patterns.
Demography, Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Demography, Housing, Rural, Young Adults Publication
Rural Demographic Change in the New Century: Slower Growth, Increased Diversity
This brief examines rural demographic trends in the first decade of the twenty-first century using newly available data from the 2010 Census. The rural population grew by just 2.2 million between 2000 and 2010—a gain barely half as great as that during the 1990s. Population growth was particularly slow in farming and mining counties and sharply reduced in rural manufacturing counties.
Demography, Vulnerable Families Research Program Demography, Rural Publication
Rural Depopulation in a Rapidly Urbanizing America
This brief examines demographic trends in rural America, a region often overlooked in a nation dominated by urban interests. Yet, 46 million people live in rural areas that encompass 72 percent of the land area of the United States. “Rural America” is a simple term that describes a remarkably diverse collection of people and places.
Demography Community, Demography, Rural, Urban Publication
Senior Tax Breaks on the Move—but Are Seniors Actually Moving?
Every state in the United States with an income tax offers some kind of tax break to its older citizens. These breaks are often sizable, resulting in an elderly household owing substantially less in income taxes than a non-elderly household with the same income. In Alabama, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Michigan, Mississippi, and Pennsylvania, married elderly households can have incomes well over $100,000 and not owe any state income taxes at all. Such tax breaks come at considerable cost to state coffers, a cost that is almost certain to grow as the elderly population grows in both size and economic status. Yet there is little evidence that these tax breaks are providing states with any economic benefit, and the savings are skewed toward those in little need of public support. These tax breaks appear to be expanding. Since the beginning of 2017, legislators in at least thirteen states have proposed or established significant expansions: Laws eliminating all taxes on Social Security income have been proposed in Vermont, Montana, and Minnesota, with projected annual budget costs of $30 million, $75 million, and approximately $425 million, respectively. Laws that would go further and exempt all pension income have been proposed in Connecticut and Nebraska. In January, Arkansas began exempting all military pension income from taxation, and similar laws are being considered in at least six other states. After much debate last year, New Jersey enacted legislation doubling the $20,000 exemption on retirement income in 2017 and increasing it to $100,000 by 2020.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Demography, Seniors, Tax Publication
The Changing Faces of America's Children and Youth
The U.S. Census Bureau estimates indicate that between July 2008 and July 2009, 48.6 percent of the 4 million children born in the United States were minorities. In contrast, nearly 60 percent of the children born ten years ago were non-Hispanic white. This rapid change demonstrates that America's youth are at the forefront of the country's rapidly shifting demographic makeup. This brief reveals the factors causing this increase in the proportion of minority births.
Demography, Vulnerable Families Research Program Birth Rates, Children, Demography, Young Adults Publication
The Changing Faces of New England
New England is growing more slowly than the rest of the nation. The region is becoming more racially diverse, and demographic trends contrast sharply between northern and southern New England and metropolitan and rural areas. New England's population stood at 14,270,000 in July 2006, marking a gain of just 2.5 percent since 2000, less than half the national rate.
Demography, New Hampshire Birth Rates, Demography, Immigration, Migration, Mortality, New England, Race Publication
The Changing Faces of New Hampshire
New Hampshire, with a total population of 1.3 million, gained 79,000 residents between 2000 and 2006. Most of this growth - 51,000 residents - came from migration. The migration also brought economic gains: New Hampshire gained at least $1.4 billion in income from migration between 2001 and 2005, and households moving in earned nearly $9,000 more than those leaving.
Demography, New Hampshire Birth Rates, Demography, Hispanics, Migration, New England, New Hampshire Publication
The Hidden Cost of the Recession: Two Million Fewer Births and Still Counting
The Great Recession sent an economic shock through American society that reached far beyond the stock and housing markets, including the substantial long-term impact the Great Recession is having on U.S. births. Nearly 2.3 million fewer babies were born in the United States between 2008 and 2013 than would have been expected if pre-recession fertility rates had been sustained (see Figure 1). In each of the last three years, this birth deficit has resulted in nearly 500,000 fewer births.
Demography Birth Rates, Demography Publication
The Increasing Diversity of America's Youth
This brief documents how unfolding demographic forces have placed today’s children and youth at the forefront of America’s new racial and ethnic diversity. Authors Kenneth M. Johnson, Andrew Schaefer, Daniel T. Lichter, and Luke T.
Demography Birth Rates, Children, Demography, Hispanics Publication
Understanding Connections Between Rural Communities and Family Well-Being: A Study of Hampton, Iowa
In this report, author Cynthia Needles Fletcher explores the role of "place" in shaping rural residents'-and in particular low-income residents'-futures. The analysis draws from interviews with residents and community key informants in Hampton, Iowa in an original study in 1997 and again in 2012-13.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Community, Demography, Family, Health Publication
White Deaths Exceed Births in One-Third of U.S. States
In 2014, deaths among non-Hispanic whites exceeded births in more states than at any time in U.S. history. Seventeen states, home to 121 million residents or roughly 38 percent of the U.S. population, had more deaths than births among non-Hispanic whites (hereafter referred to as whites) in 2014, compared to just four in 2004. When births fail to keep pace with deaths, a region is said to have a “natural decrease” in population, which can only be offset by migration gains. In twelve of the seventeen states with white natural decreases, the white population diminished overall between 2013 and 2014. This research is the first to examine the growing incidence of white natural decrease among U.S. states and to consider its policy implications. Our analysis of the demographic factors that cause white natural decrease suggests that the pace is likely to pick up in the future. Over the last several decades, demographers have noted the growing incidence of natural decrease in the United States.1 More widespread natural decrease results from declining fertility due to the Great Recession, and the aging of the large baby boom cohorts born between 1946 and 1964. This senior population is projected to expand from nearly 15 percent of the total population in 2015 to nearly 24 percent in 2060.2 Much of this aging baby boom population is white, and so white mortality is growing. Together, growing white mortality and the diminishing number of white births increase the likelihood of more white natural decrease. In contrast, births exceed deaths by a considerable margin among the younger Latino population, and the combination of these very different demographic trends is increasing the diversity of the U.S. population.3
Demography Demography, Mortality Publication
With Less Migration, Natural Increase is Now More Important to State Growth
According to Johnson's analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data, the nation continues to experience reduced levels of domestic migration (movement from one state to another) as a result of the economic recession, and natural increases (births versus deaths) are an increasingly important factor in population gains.
Demography Birth Rates, Demography, Migration, Mortality Publication