Papeles de población
Print version ISSN 1405-7425
ESTEVE, Albert; GARCIA, Joan and MCCAA, Robert. The numbering of feminine singleness in population censuses: bias and correction proposal. Pap. poblac [online]. 2010, vol.16, n.66, pp. 9-40. ISSN 1405-7425.
This paper investigates the effect of the dissolution of consensual unions on the observed levels of women singleness as estimated from the marital status variable in Latin American population censuses. We compare census data with data from Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) for those countries and years where both sources are available (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, and Peru). Results show that the proportions of single women based on the census 'marital status' variable are systematically higher than those estimated from DHS. This overestimation is due to individuals formerly in consensual unions declaring themselves as singles at the time of the census. The large proportion of single women who have children is strong evidence of this and at the same time it appears to be a valid and practical option to correct the bias.
Keywords : consensual union; partner; marriage; single female with children; Bolivia; Brazil; Colombia and Peru.