Monday, February 25, 2008

Maps of the Foreign Born in the US

Every so often, we'll get a question on behalf of a client who seeks to know the population concentration in the U.S. for a specific nationality. Until recently, I didn't know that the Migration Policy Institute has on their site a series of maps that can help meet this need.

The site is limited, though, in the number of countries that it has tracked. In addition to a map of the U.S. that shows "States with the Largest and Fastest-Growing Populations of Foreign Born (2006)," the site links to county-level maps (in PDF form) for these categories:

1) The foreign born as percentage of total county population, 2000:
Foreign-born population (total)
Foreign born from Mexico
Foreign born from the Philippines
Foreign born from India
Foreign born from China
Foreign born from Vietnam

2) The number of foreign born by county, 2000
Foreign born from South America
Foreign born from the Caribbean
Foreign born from Africa
Foreign born from Iran
Foreign born from Pakistan

In addition, each map has a corresponding link to an article profile that helps interpret the data.
Keep in mind that these maps don't measure the concentration of a particular ancestry (e.g., the number of Americans primarily of Irish descent in the Boston area).

As Roger can attest, the Census Bureau (from which these maps were drawn) offers the means to get more geographically-precise data on foreign-born and/or ancestry populations.

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