Brazil municipalities and mesorregions


Municipalities (munibr) are supposed to be nested in mesoregions (mesobr). However, there are some municipalities belonging to several mesoregions due to the harmonization and confidentialization of the variable munibr.

In years 1980, 1991 and 2000, when I look at municipalities that have not been harmonized nor confidentialized (munibr with code ending by a number smaller than 99900), I logically find that each one of those belong to one mesoregion (ie. they are nested in mesoregions).

However, this is not true in 2010. I find this weird. Does any one have an explanation?



We are in the process of creating harmonized states and municipios for Brazil, which would account for boundary changes over the years as well as take into account the state-municipio hierarchy (i.e. nesting). Presently what is released in the IPUMS International website for Brazil is “harmonized by name”. Also, we are not taking mesoregions into the nesting hierarchy because mesoregions in Brazil are created for statistical purposes and are not administrative areas. Therefore it is possible that you are finding municipalities crossing mesoregions that are combined due to less than 20,000 persons confidentiality threshold.

Thanks for your detailed answer. However my point is that in 2010 there are original municipalities (ie. municipalities which have NOT been combined) that yet cross several mesoregions.

This is weird and I do not think it can solely be explained by the fact that the variable munibr is harmonized by name only (or in other words, by changes in adminsitrative boundaries of some muncipalities) since 182 of such original municipalities are concerned.