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Conflating Census Data using Distance Metrics and Optimization

Authors: WENJUN YANG*, University of Kansas, TING LEI, Geography and Atmosphere Science Department, University of Kansas
Topics: Geographic Information Science and Systems, Applied Geography, United States
Keywords: Conflation, GIS, Polygon
Session Type: Paper
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The discrepancies of areal boundary is a common situation in comparative studies which require the interpolation of data from one time period to another. For example, the change of some tract boundaries in 2010 census with respect to 2000 boundaries can render census data about population and housing characteristics of the two years incomparable. The study will introduce a conflation method to harmonize the census data of different years in which we match two years' tract boundaries, identify the areas of changes, and reallocate 2000 population and housing attributes to the 2010 boundaries based on the match relation. Preliminary results show that most change cases can be correctly identified and automatically handled.

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