Census: UNH Experts Available
Media Contact: Amy Sterndale
Carsey Institute

Contact for Information: Beth Potier
UNH Media Relations
Mar 18, 2010

DURHAM, N.H. – As the United States undertakes the 2010 census, three demographers at the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire and the director of the nationally recognized UNH Survey Center are available to comment on the implications of the census for a range of Americans and U.S. policy. Carsey Institute senior demographer Ken Johnson can comment on the census in general as well as regional trends and the impact of migration and minorities. Family demographer Kristin Smith can comment on census trends affecting women and families. William O’Hare, senior policy fellow at the Carsey Institute, can comment on the challenges of accurately counting rural America. Andrew Smith, director of the UNH Survey Center, can discuss how the census could affect the electoral college and presidential elections.

Ken Johnson (ken.johnson@unh.edu or 603-862-2205), who is also a professor of sociology at UNH, is a nationally recognized expert on demographic trends in America. His research at the Carsey Institute examines national and regional migration trends and the impact of immigration and minorities. His recent research found that nearly half of the children born in the U.S. in 2009 were minorities (available here: http://www.carseyinstitute.unh.edu/docs/Johnson_Growing_Diversity_Mar2010.pdf).

“Children are in the vanguard of the demographic change underway in the country,” says Johnson. “The new census offers us an opportunity to examine this as well as to gauge the effect of the economic recession on U.S. demographic trends.”

Kristin Smith’s (kristin.smith@unh.edu or 603-862-2821) research at the Carsey Institute focuses on women’s labor force participation and work and family policy. She previously worked at the Census Bureau for seven years as a family demographer and has extensive experience analyzing several national data sets.

“The economic recession has taken a toll on American families, with one consequence being an increased reliance on wives as breadwinners since roughly three-fourths of job loss has been among men,” Smith says.  Her recent study documenting this trend is available here: http://www.carseyinstitute.unh.edu/publications/IB-Smith-Breadwinners09.pdf.

William O’Hare (WOhare@aecf.org or 410-547-6600, ext. 2049) is available to comment on the characteristics of rural America that may make certain rural areas difficult to count and on the policy and funding impact such undercounting can have. O’Hare, who is also a senior fellow with the Annie E. Casey Foundation, wrote a Carsey Institute brief on this subject. “Rural Areas Risk Being Overlooked in 2010 Census” is available to download here: http://www.carseyinstitute.unh.edu/publications/IB_Ohare_Census_2010.pdf.

“In certain cases, the census misses large segments of the rural population,” he says. “Notably, blacks in the rural South, Hispanics in the Southwest border region, and American Indians on reservations in the Southwest and Northern Plains are among the hardest-to-count populations.”

Andrew Smith (andrew.smith@unh.edu and 603-862-2226) is an associate professor of political science and director of the UNH Survey Center. A nationally recognized expert on presidential polling and politics, Smith can discuss how the 2010 U.S. Census could impact the Electoral College and presidential elections.

The Carsey Institute conducts policy and applied research on vulnerable families and on sustainable community development, giving policy makers and practitioners the timely, independent resources they need to effect change in their communities. Learn more at http://carseyinstitute.unh.edu/.

The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea, and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling 12,200 undergraduate and 2,200 graduate students.