2020 Virginia Population Projections Were Close to the Mark

Absolute Percentage Difference Between 2020 Projections and Census Count. Source: StatChat

The Weldon Cooper for Public Service at the University of Virginia, in charge of the state’s demographic count, has given itself a pat on the back for its ten-year projection of 2020 Virginia population. The self congratulations are probably deserved.

Weldon Cooper’s projection was only 0.27% higher than the Census Count. The actual population increase was 7.4% between 2010 and 2020. Also, projections for 90% of Virginia’s localities fell within 5% of the actual count.

Making population projections is a tricky business. Check out Shonel Sen’s discussion on the StatChat blog to get an idea of the challenge. The projections are used by a wide variety of state agencies for planning purposes, so accurate forecasts are important.


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One response to “2020 Virginia Population Projections Were Close to the Mark”

  1. LarrytheG Avatar

    VDOT and transportation planning in general is reliant on population projects in part because many major projects take ten or more years from lines on a map to dirt.

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