Coding Geographic Areas Across Census Years: Creating Consistent Definitions of Metropolitan Areas
This paper presents suggested matches for the geographical coding (geocoding) of metropolitan areas in the 1970, 1980, and 1990 Censuses. The Census Bureau used different definitions and taxonomies to describe the geography of metropolitan areas in these three Census years. As a result, the geographical areas referred to by the standard Census Bureau definitions differ among the three Census data sets. The geographic matching scheme explained in this paper attempts to maximize consistency over time for metropolitan areas in the U.S.