Total Emp Gif

Creating Geographical Crosswalks

by Fabian Eckert, Andrés Gvirtz, Jack Liang, and Michael Peters


A Method to Construct Geographical Crosswalks with an Application to US Counties since 1790 [02/20] [Data Files] [NBER WP #26770] [Old Version]


Abstract:

Empirical researchers often have to map data provided for a reporting spatial unit, say counties in 1900, to a reference one, say, counties in 2010. We discuss a general method to create such crosswalks: computing the share of the area of each reporting unit nested in a given reference unit. Using these shares, data can be re-aggregated from the reporting to the reference units. We apply the method to construct a crosswalk for mapping US county-level data from 1790 to 2010 to present-day county or commuting zone delineations. We also provide the code to generate other crosswalks given maps of reporting and reference units.


US County Crosswalks:

1990 Counties   2010 Counties   1990 Commuting Zones  
Replication Package   Github Repo   Crosswalk Readme  
Usage Example   Example Readme  


US Commuting Zone Shapefile:

1990  
Source  


Creating General Geographical Crosswalks:

Python Codes   Github Repo  
Readme  



If you use the crosswalks or code posted on this website please cite:


Fabian Eckert, Andrés Gvirtz, Jack Liang, and Michael Peters. "A Method to Construct Geographical Crosswalks with an Application to US Counties since 1790." NBER Working Paper #26770, 2020

@techreport{eckert2020crosswalk,
title={A Method to Construct Geographical Crosswalks with an Application to US Counties since 1790},
author={Eckert, Fabian and Gvirtz, Andr{\'e}s and Liang, Jack and Peters, Michael},
year={2020},
institution={National Bureau of Economic Research}
}


Other Ready-made Crosswalks for US Data:

  • For Census Tracts 1970-2010 is here
  • The County Longitudinal Template we reference is here
  • Richard Hornbeck provides county boundary fixes for 1880-1910 in the suppelementary material to: Barbed Wire: Property Rights and Agricultural Development here