Status of 1990 Census Follow-Up and Evaluation Efforts

T-GGD-90-58: Published: Jul 23, 1990. Publicly Released: Jul 23, 1990.

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GAO discussed: (1) the Census Bureau's progress in completing follow-up census efforts; and (2) early indications of the accuracy and completeness of census data. GAO noted that: (1) the Bureau completed nonresponse follow-up efforts in almost all of the 447 district offices that had such work; (2) follow-up efforts took place 7 weeks after the scheduled completion date, and 1 month after the 3-week delay period; (3) with the completion of most nonresponse follow-up efforts, the Bureau initiated coverage improvement efforts; (4) as of July 18, 1990, the Bureau had completed about 79 percent of its work load, but as a result of nonresponse work delays, subsequent follow-up efforts have also been delayed; (5) nonresponse follow-up delays negatively affected the Post Enumeration Survey schedule; (6) for about 3.5 percent of the occupied households on its address list, the Bureau gathered data from a nonhousehold member because the Bureau could not locate a resident, but this occurred much more in urban areas; and (7) the Bureau did not know the exact data quality implications of last-resort data, but such data introduced a potential source of error into the census that fell disproportionately in some of those areas where the Bureau experienced the greatest difficulties.

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