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A Bayesian Reconstruction of a Historical Population in Finland, 1647–1850

Miikka Voutilainen (), Jouni Helske and Harri Högmander
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Miikka Voutilainen: University of Jyvaskyla
Jouni Helske: University of Jyvaskyla
Harri Högmander: University of Jyvaskyla

Demography, 2020, vol. 57, issue 3, No 15, 1192 pages

Abstract: Abstract This article provides a novel method for estimating historical population development. We review the previous literature on historical population time-series estimates and propose a general outline to address the well-known methodological problems. We use a Bayesian hierarchical time-series model that allows us to integrate the parish-level data set and prior population information in a coherent manner. The procedure provides us with model-based posterior intervals for the final population estimates. We demonstrate its applicability by estimating the long-term development of Finland’s population from 1647 onward and simultaneously place the country among the very few to have an annual population series of such length available.

Keywords: Population history; Population growth; Early modern era; Bayesian estimation (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s13524-020-00889-1

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