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Claritas Study Ranks Racial/Ethnic Diversity in Counties Nationwide; Analysis Shows California Leads Nation In Diversity Among Counties Of 100,000-Plus Population.

Business Editors


Note: A complete diversity database (3,139 U.S. counties)

with select maps will be accessible at the

site soon.

With Census 2000 data showing a dramatic increase in the nation's racial/ethnic diversity, much of it due to the rise in the Hispanic Hispanic Multiculture A person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race Social medicine Any of 17 major Latino subcultures, concentrated in California, Texas, Chicago, Miam, NY, and elsewhere  population nationwide, demographers at Claritas Inc., the premier provider of intelligent marketing information and target marketing services, took a closer look at exactly how counties of 100,000-plus population ranked on diversity in the 1990 and 2000 censuses.

The study found, among other things, that California California (kăl'ĭfôr`nyə), most populous state in the United States, located in the Far West; bordered by Oregon (N), Nevada and, across the Colorado River, Arizona (E), Mexico (S), and the Pacific Ocean (W).  dominated the Census 2000 diversity score rankings with nine counties in the Top 20, two of which were in the Top 10.

Those two counties were Alameda Alameda (ăləmē`də, –mā`də), city (1990 pop. 76,459), Alameda co., W central Calif., on an island just off the eastern shore of San Francisco Bay; settled 1850, inc. as a city 1884.  County and Los Angeles Los Angeles (lôs ăn`jələs, lŏs, ăn`jəlēz'), city (1990 pop. 3,485,398), seat of Los Angeles co., S Calif.; inc. 1850.  County, coming in at two and nine respectively. Since 1990, Alameda jumped six places from number eight, and Los Angeles fell five spots from fourth. The other California counties in the Census 2000 Top 20 (and where they ranked in 1990) are:
-- White, non-Hispanic

-- Black, non-Hispanic

-- American Indian, Eskimo or Aleut, non-Hispanic

-- Asian or Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic

-- Hispanic

Shifting to the east coast, New York New York, state, United States
New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of
 state was second with four counties, including the number one county, Queens, and three others in the top 10. Queens was also number one in 1990 and its diversity score increased by just over six points from 67.5 in 1990 to 73.6 over the 10-year span.

The diversity score reflects the probability that two persons selected randomly from a county's population would be of different race/ethnicity. The higher the score, the greater the race/ethnic diversity, explained Ken Hodges Kenneth Raymond Hodge, Sr. (born June 25, 1944, Birmingham, England) was a professional hockey player for the NHL Boston Bruins, Chicago Black Hawks and New York Rangers. He was notable, among numerous achievements, for being involved in two of the most one-sided trades in hockey , director of demography demography (dĭmŏg`rəfē), science of human population. Demography represents a fundamental approach to the understanding of human society.  at Claritas.

"Select a person from Queens and almost three out of four times, the second person selected will be of a different race/ethnic category," said Hodges.

Hodges said the diversity score was computed for 3,139 counties nationwide, adding that over 91 percent (2,873 counties) experienced an increase in diversity over the decade. The diversity score for the total U.S. population increased from 40.4 in 1990 to 47.7 in 2000.

Like Queens, Manhattan maintained its 1990 ranking at seventh with a modest increase in its diversity score from 65.6 to 67.1. Kings County (Brooklyn) slipped from number two in 1990 to number three in 2000, also with a marginal diversity score increase -- 67.5 to 69.7. Bronx County had a significant drop from the fifth spot in 1990 to 17 in 2000, but with only a slight drop in diversity score from 66.3 to 63.6.

Texas came in third with three counties, Fort Bend Fort Bend was a blockhouse built in a large bend of the Brazos River in what is now Fort Bend County, Texas to provide protection against Indian raids. It was erected in November 1822 by several members of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred, including William W.  (5th, Houston area), Harris (8th, Houston) and Dallas (10th). Dallas County Dallas County is the name of five counties in the United States of America:
  • Named for Vice President of the United States of America George M. Dallas:
  • Dallas County, Arkansas
 also made the largest leap in ranking, moving 18 spots from 28th place in 1990.

                Top 20 Counties by 2000 Diversity Score
            (Counties with 100,000-plus Population in 2000)

County       2000        Rank  Rank  Diversity  Diversity  Change
             Population  1990  2000  1990       2000       1990-2000

NY           2,229,379   1     1     67.5       73.6       6.1

Alameda, CA
(Oakland)    1,443,741   8     2     64.4       70.7       6.3

Kings, NY
(Brooklyn)   2,465,326   2     3     67.5       69.7       2.2

Robeson, NC    123,339   6     4     66.2       69.0       2.8

Fort Bend, TX
Houston)       354,452  11     5     62.7       68.1       5.4

Hudson, NJ     608,975   9     6     64.3       67.6       3.3

New York, NY
(Manhattan)  1,537,195   7     7     65.6       67.1       1.5

Harris, TX
(Houston)    3,400,578  13     8     61.6       67.1       5.5

Los Angeles,
CA           9,519,338   4     9     66.7       67.0       0.3

Dallas, TX   2,218,899  28    10     56.9       66.5       9.6

San Francisco,
CA             776,733   3    11     67.1       66.5      -0.6

Solano, CA     394,542  22    12     57.8       66.0       8.2

Santa Clara,
CA           1,682,585  19    13     58.8       66.0       7.2

Cook, IL     5,376,741  18    14     58.8       65.3       6.5

Essex, NJ
(Newark)       793,633  12    15     62.4       65.2       2.8

San Joaquin,
CA             563,598  21    16     58.1       64.5       6.4

Bronx, NY    1,332,650   5    17     66.3       63.6      -2.7

San Mateo,
CA             707,161  24    18     57.4       63.3       5.9

San Bernardino,
CA           1,709,434  34    19     55.0       62.9       7.9

Fresno, CA     799,407  14    20     60.6       62.8       2.2

      Conversely, the 20 counties with the lowest diversity scores with
100,000-plus population in 2000 were:

            Top 20 Counties by Lowest 2000 Diversity Score
            (Counties with 100,000-plus Population in 2000)

County        2000        Rank  Rank  Diversity  Diversity  Change
              Population  1990  2000  1990       2000       1990-2000

Butler County,
PA            174083      1     1     2.63       4.46       1.83

Blair County,
PA            129144      6     2     3.00       4.71       1.72

York County,
ME            186742      9     3     3.49       4.88       1.38

Kennebec County,
ME            117114      5     4     2.79       4.90       2.10

Jefferson County,
MO            198099     13     5     3.77       5.36       1.59

Washington County,
WI            117493      4     6     2.73       5.46       2.73

Tazewell County,
IL            128485      2     7     2.63       5.76       3.13

Medina County,
OH            151095     15     8     3.87       5.76       1.89

Androscoggin County,
ME            103793     12     9     3.77       5.82       2.05

Clermont County,
OH            177977     10    10     3.50       5.83       2.33

Oswego County,
NY            122377     18    11     4.22       5.97       1.75

Merrimack County,
NH            136225      7    12     3.26       5.98       2.71

Livingston County,
MI            156951     23    13     4.76       6.18       1.43

Penobscot County,
ME            144919     20    14     4.56       6.32       1.76

Westmoreland County,
PA            369993     28    15     5.31       6.67       1.36

Rockingham County,
NH            277359     33    16     5.79       6.71        .92

Johnson County,
IN            115209     24    17     4.76       6.78       2.02

Hendricks County,
IN            104093     14    18     3.78       6.85       3.07

Wayne County,
OH            111564     26    19     5.09       6.88       1.79

Sullivan County,
TN            153048     29    20     5.34       6.92       1.58

Hodges noted that comparisons of 1990 and 2000 census race (and diversity) are complicated by differences between 1990 and 2000 census race definitions. "The 2000 census was the first to permit respondents In the context of marketing research, a representative sample drawn from a larger population of people from whom information is collected and used to develop or confirm marketing strategy.  to mark more than one race, thus expanding a simple set of five race categories to a list of 63 -- including the combinations of two or more races. Claritas bridged or estimated the 2000 census race data back to 1990 definitions to enable comparisons between the two censuses," he said.

The race/ethnic categories examined were:

-- White, non-Hispanic

-- Black, non-Hispanic

-- American Indian, Eskimo or Aleut, non-Hispanic

-- Asian or Pacific Islander, non-Hispanic

-- Hispanic

Claritas also ranked the Top 20 large counties by increase and decrease in diversity score. Of large counties that increased, two in the Atlanta area came in first and second, Gwinnett and Cobb, and, overall, Georgia Georgia, country, Asia
Georgia (jôr`jə), Georgian Sakartvelo, Rus. Gruziya, officially Republic of Georgia, republic (2005 est. pop. 4,677,000), c.26,900 sq mi (69,700 sq km), in W Transcaucasia.
 had the most with four, all in the top 10. The other two are Hall County at number four and Clayton County Clayton County is the name of two counties in the United States:
  • Clayton County, Georgia (Located in the Atlanta Metropolitan Area)
  • Clayton County, Iowa
 at number 10. Gwinnett County had an increase of 30.9 points from 1990 to 2000, going from 19.6 to 50.5. Cobb County nearly doubled over the 10-year span from 24.7 to 47.2, a jump of 22.5 points.

Elsewhere, Florida placed three in the top 20, Osceola, (3rd), Broward (7th) and Orange (14th). Arkansas Arkansas, river, United States
Arkansas (ärkăn`zəs, är`kənsô'), river, c.1,450 mi (2,330 km) long, rising in the Rocky Mts., central Colo.
, New Jersey, Oregon Oregon, city, United States
Oregon, city (1990 pop. 18,334), Lucas co., NW Ohio, a suburb adjacent to Toledo, on Lake Erie; inc. 1958. It is a port with railroad-owned and -operated docks. The city has industries producing oil, chemicals, and metal products.
 and Virginia all had two each.

In the list of Top 20 counties that decreased in diversity score, Texas was far and away the leader with six counties, including the number one and three counties, El Paso El Paso (ĕl pă`sō), city (1990 pop. 515,342), seat of El Paso co., extreme W Tex., on the Rio Grande opposite Juárez, Mex.; inc. 1873.  and Hidalgo Hidalgo, state, Mexico
Hidalgo thäl`gō), state (1990 pop. 1,888,366), 8,058 sq mi (20,870 sq km), central Mexico. Pachuca de Soto is the capital.
. Three states, California, Florida and Maryland, had two each. (NOTE: When active, both listings will be accessible via designated links at

Hodges explained that, while decreasing diversity runs counter to the trend, it does not mean that an area is increasingly White, or has declining Black, Asian, American Indian American Indian
 or Native American or Amerindian or indigenous American

Any member of the various aboriginal peoples of the Western Hemisphere, with the exception of the Eskimos (Inuit) and the Aleuts.
 or Hispanic populations.

For example, the diversity score in El Paso County El Paso County may refer to one of the following counties in the United States:
  • El Paso County, Colorado
  • El Paso County, Texas
 dropped because its Hispanic population increased from 69.6 percent to 78.2 percent, while White, non-Hispanic, dropped from 25.7 percent in 1990 to 17.4 percent in 2000.

Similarly, in Prince George's County, MD, which experienced a drop in diversity score, Black, non-Hispanic, population increased from 50.2 percent to 63.1 percent, while White, non-Hispanic, dropped markedly from 41.6 percent to 25 percent.

"In short, large counties where the diversity score decreased tended to be those with a large Hispanic, Asian or Black population in 1990 that became even more predominant pre·dom·i·nant  
1. Having greatest ascendancy, importance, influence, authority, or force. See Synonyms at dominant.

 by 2000," said Hodges.

About Claritas

Based in San Diego San Diego (săn dēā`gō), city (1990 pop. 1,110,549), seat of San Diego co., S Calif., on San Diego Bay; inc. 1850. San Diego includes the unincorporated communities of La Jolla and Spring Valley. Coronado is across the bay. , Claritas Inc. is regarded as the premier worldwide provider of precision marketing solutions, developed, in part, through intricate customer segmentation systems and other such marketing tools. Claritas is a division of VNU VNU Volontaires des Nations Unies (French)
VNU Verenigde Nederlandse Uitgeversbedrijven (Dutch)
VNU Virtual Network User
 Marketing Information Inc. (VNU MI Inc.), an established leader in providing a wide variety of industries with innovative precision-marketing solutions including geodemographic information and qualitative audience research. VNU MI Inc. is a subsidiary of VNU Inc., which also includes Nielsen Media Research, Bill Communications, BPI (Bits Per Inch) The measurement of the number of bits stored in one linear inch of a track (storage channel) on a disk or tape. Bit density on magnetic disks has reached 800,000 bpi (800 Kbpi). See tpi, areal density and magnetic disk.

BPI - bits per inch
 Communications, SRDS SRDS Symposium on Reliable Distributed Systems
SRDS Standard Rate and Data Service
SRDS Shop Repair Data Sheets
, VNU eMedia, and VNU Expositions.
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Date:Jul 23, 2001
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