The Base Population

  • Alain Bélanger
  • Patrick Sabourin
Part of the The Springer Series on Demographic Methods and Population Analysis book series (PSDE, volume 43)


This fifth chapter will deal with the integration of a base population into a Modgen microsimulation model, and as such will be more technical than conceptual or demographic. Up to now, the simulated population has been synthetic; all the actors and their characteristics have been generated by the model itself. A synthetic population requires statistical distributions to be created, describing the distribution of characteristics in the population. An example of this is the distribution of births by province which we included in Chap.  3. However, it may be more practical to use microdata taken directly from a real population as a starting point for the simulation. Rather than generating random characteristics for the actors, such as birth province or sex, we will be using information contained in a database representing an actual population for our simulation. In this chapter, data from the National Household Survey (NHS) will be used to make a projection of the population of Canada starting from 2011 (the year of the survey). We will start by giving a brief description of how to prepare and format the data file to be used for the base population. Next, we will see how to incorporate an external class into the Modgen project in order to read the datafile and import its content. Finally, we will modify the main file and the Start function so as to incorporate the import functions into the model code and initialize actor states using the imported data.


Base Population Canadian Population Fertility Module Real Population Simulation Loop 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alain Bélanger
    • 1
  • Patrick Sabourin
    • 1
  1. 1.Urbanisation Culture SociétéInst nat de la recherche scientifique Urbanisation Culture SociétéMontréalCanada

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