Employment not a Big Factor
Subject: Census: Home is Where the Work Is (December 24, 2002)
Date: Tuesday, December 24, 2002 12:04 PM
USA Today misinterpreted the 2001 American Housing Survey data. The principal reason for the increase in the number of people citing convenience to the job in the housing decision is that respondents gave more reasons than in 1991. The increase in duplicate reasons (permitted in the Survey) led to an increase in 7 of the 9 response categories, with the smallest percentage increase in the "convencient to job" category. This should have raised suspicions. Even convenience to leisure activities and convenience to relatives increased at a greater rate. The 2001 Survey, unlike 1991, also asked for the main reason --- with duplicate answers not permitted. In fact, convenience to the job accounts for only 21 percent of reasons, which means that 79 percent chose their neighborhoods based upon other considerations. Urban planners, many of whom are already too much led by doctrine than data, should not be misled into redoubling their futile efforts to better match jobs to residences. That planning is done by people.
are undertakings of
WENDELL COX CONSULTANCY
P. O. Box 841 - Belleville, IL 62222 USA
Telephone: +1.618.632.8507 - Facsimile: +1.775.521.8564