Cancensus

TongFen

Tongfen is now on CRAN, time for a short overview of what tongfen is and how it aids research on longitudinal spatial data on different yet congruent geographies.

Jens von Bergmann

12 minute read

The tongfen R package is now on CRAN, so it’s time for an overview post. Tongfen has changed a bit since it’s inception and is now a lot more flexible but slightly more abstract to use. What is tongfen? Tongfen, 通分 in Chinese, generally denotes the process of bringing two fractions onto the least common denominator. This is akin to the problem of making data on different but congruent geographies comparable by finding a least common geography.

Income mixing and segregation

Taking a look at the new StatCan D-index and related income mixing metrics

Jens von Bergmann

20 minute read

At the end of June StatCan released an interesting census tract level metric, dubbed the D-index, measuring how much the income distribution in each census tract differs from the metro-wide distribution, and we decided to take it for a test drive. We are a bit of a sucker for this kind of fine-geography index. Condensing our wealth of information into a single number is an interesting exercise that involves lots of attention to detail.

Canadian 1996 Census

Expanding timelines, the Canadian 1996 census is now available on CensusMapper and via {cancensus}.

Jens von Bergmann

6 minute read

Canadian 1996 census data is now avaiable on CensusMapper for anyone to make maps, for API access and via the {cancensus} R package. Yay! The geographic data is not freely available from Statistics Canada, but can be custom ordered (via a small processing fee). Now the data is freely available on CensusMapper. The geographic data is slightly processed, we clipped out water areas and geographies from CSD upward are slightly simplified for better mapping performance as usual on CensusMapper.

On mixing covid-19 and census data

Doing this with Canadian data is a tall order. But since people are doing it, we might as well explain some of the ins and outs.

Jens von Bergmann

12 minute read

Mixing census data with COVID-19 case and mortality data seems like an obvious thing to do when trying to understand how COVID-19 affects different groups. But it’s only of very limited use. COVID-19 data is only (openly) available on coarse geographies and can only be matched at the ecological level. Deriving individual level relationships from this is extremely ambitious. At best, it can inform decisions on what individual level data should be collected moving forward.

Projections and self-fulfilling prophecies

Housing and population growth are endogenous in high-demand areas. Which gives cities the tools to exclude people, but should they? Deciding how to grow is a values question, not a technocratic one.

Jens von Bergmann Nathan Lauster

13 minute read

(Joint with Nathan Lauster and cross-posted at HomeFreeSociology) When people want to live in your city, how many should you let in? On the one hand, this is a moral question. Do you have an obligation to people who don’t already live here? On the other hand, it’s a moot question. At least in Canada, cities don’t have the power to control migration. BUT WAIT! Cities DO have power over how many new dwellings to allow.