Why Is Designing Experiments In Human Demography Difficult?


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Connor Sephton answered
Demographics refers to the characteristics of a given population. This type of data is used in many ways and some of the most common that are examined include:

• Race
• Gender
• Age
• Location
• Employment status
• Home ownership

These studies are invaluable to businesses, political parties, government entities, and more.  Designing these experiments are difficult in some cases because it is difficult to assign some people to specific demographic groups. An experiment in race would be hard to design due to the intermingling and inter-breeding between Caucasian, Hispanic, black, Asian, and many other races making it hard to identify just who is who and who belongs to what race.

There are many other problems in demographic profiling as it is essentially about making generalizations about groups of people. As with all generalizations, there are many individuals within the group that will not conform to the norms. It's all about the groups and not individuals, and for this fact critics will point out that such generalizations can offer very little insight and very little practical use.

Still, this has not stopped people and businesses from conducting demographic profiles, and there are entire business niches that are dedicated to gathering information in this manner, and they have plenty of people who are willing to buy this information. Still it should be kept in mind the old rule of thumb about facts such as these. And that rule is that generalizations are generally wrong.

Demographic information is still valuable to this day to companies that are interested in doing mass marketing campaigns and it is still of vital importance to political parties who are interested in reaching and appealing to a large mass of people in a race or age demographic. For this reason alone among others, demographic studies are not going anywhere soon.

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