Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Southern Demographic Association, Hilton Head, South Carolina This paper evaluates summary measures of population projection accuracy and bias for a large sample of counties and county equivalents in the continental United States over the period 1900–2000. The analysis has two primary purposes. The first is to investigate the relationship between accuracy and bias and the length of the projection horizon and base period.
A chain of supermarkets decides to launch a new line of ethnic foods. Where should it concentrate its marketing efforts? A school district is plagued by increasingly crowded elementary schools. Is this a temporary phenomenon or a continuing long-run trend? A hospital considers adding an obstetrics unit. Will anticipated service demand cover the additional costs? A metropolitan transportation agency plans to expand its rapid transit system. Where should new routes and transit stops be added? A manufacturer needs to build a new plant.
There are many "Floridas." There are the farms and small towns of north Florida, with families that have lived there for generations; the booming commercial and industrial areas of central Florida, creating new jobs and attracting young workers and their families from all over the United States; the retirement villages of southwest Florida, bringing thousands of snowbirds and retirees from northern states each year; and the enclaves of foreign-born residents in southeast Florida, bringing cultural diversity and a melting-pot ambiance to the region.
In this study, we describe an approach that can be used to estimate the demographic impact of hurricanes and other natural disasters, provide a detailed assessment of the 2004 hurricane season in Florida, compare the 2004 hurricanes with Hurricanes Andrew (1992) and Katrina (2005), and draw several conclusions regarding the likely impact of hurricanes and other natural disasters on future population growth.