Higher Ground: An Exploratory Multivariate Analysis of Characteristics Affecting Population Displacement in the Wake of Hurricane Katrina

Jonathan D Stringfield, DePaul University

This study is an exploratory analysis utilizing multivariate techniques upon Current Population Survey data. The objectives are three-fold: First, to examine the relationship between individual and household variables in an evacuee population. Second, identify population factors which have affects on the geographic spread and propensity of return of Katrina evacuees. Third, extract latent variables in an attempt to further explain these differentiations. While acknowledged as standard practice, correlation between individual and household variables has seldom been directly addressed. In addition, though the spatial components of vulnerable populations are well documented the spatial displacement of vulnerable populations is not. These deficiencies are addressed while evaluating the viability of multivariate techniques for assessing populations after disasters. Initial results indicate individual and household variable assumptions are valid and a limited set of variables can discriminate between returned and displaced populations across geographic groupings while meaningful latent variables have been extracted for future analysis

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Presented in Session 29: Characteristics of Populations Affected by Forced Displacement