31 Small-Area and Business Demography

  • Peter A. Morrison
  • Stanley K. Smith
  • Thomas M. Bryan
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)


Demographers address a varied and ever-expanding range of practical concerns that arise in business and public policy arenas. Specialists in small-area and business demography draw upon common demographic concepts, data sources, and statistical techniques to address those concerns. The “small areas” where such concerns arise typically are sub-state areas, ranging from counties or cities to census tracts and even individual blocks. Business demography as a whole is an eclectic, loosely organized field, driven by tangible problems. These problems range from specific and highly local–e.g., where to site a parking garage–to regional or national concerns with population aging or sea level rise. This chapter first reviews the objectives and distinctive features of small-area demography, the scope and practice of business demography, and the primary tools used in both fields. Next, we profile various studies illustrating the breadth of topics small-area and business demographers address. Finally, we consider prospects for the future in both fields.


Business Consumers Decisionmaking Estimates Projections Public policy Small-area 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Peter A. Morrison
    • 1
  • Stanley K. Smith
    • 2
  • Thomas M. Bryan
    • 3
  1. 1.Morrison and AssociatesNantucketUSA
  2. 2.University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  3. 3.Bryan GeoDemographicsMidlothianUSA

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