Where (or how) to find population density at census tract level using NHGIS?

Dear all,

I was wondering if you can please guide me how I can find (or estimate) a shapefile with population density at the census tract level for Minnesota?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks,

Hi Adriana,

While IPUMS NHGIS does not have separate population density data, you can calculate the density yourself using the available data. You will need to obtain a table with total population and land area on the census tract level and use it together with the census tract shapefile. You can find this data in source tables using the IPUMS NHGIS data finder tool by filtering by geographic level, years, and datasets. Documentation on the various tables and what they contain is available. Land area is given in all source tables drawn from decennial census datasets 1980-2020 (in the variable AREALAND recorded in square meters), while total population is provided in source tables where the universe is the total population.

You can also grab the census tract shapefiles off of the GIS Files tab. Your source tables can then be joined with the GIS file using the GISJOIN variable (this tutorial outlines how to do so).