Review of multi-generational microdata for social science research

The review of multi-generational microdata for social science research that Xi Song and I wrote for the Annual Review of Sociology has now appeared in the 2017 issue.

This comprehensive review introduces the major sources of multi-generational, longitudinal data that can be analyzed in the study of demographic and stratification processes. The emphasis is on data that are already available publicly, or by application. The review also surveys major research questions in the study of multi-generational processes, and the methods used for analyzing these data.

I am pleased to provide you complimentary one-time access to my Annual Reviews article as a PDF file (, for your own personal use. Any further/multiple distribution, publication, or commercial usage of this copyrighted material requires submission of a permission request addressed to the Copyright Clearance Center (


Regarding the above, my email from the journal says that in order to “provide interested readers with free access to your article, you may also post the above e-print URL on one personal and one institutional Web page”, so I guess it is OK to include the link.




Errata from Fate and Fortune

Our book Fate and Fortune in Rural China: Social Organization and Population Behavior in Liaoning 1774-1873 appeared nearly twenty years ago. For some time, we have meant to collect and put in one place the errata that have been discovered over the years. There aren’t that many, thankfully, but it’s nice to list them all in one place. There are definitely more than are listed here, but so far, I haven’t been able to find them all in my notes. I’ll keep looking, and adding corrections as I find them. If you spot any typos in Fate and Fortune, let me know!

Page 6

In footnote 6, ‘cannabalized’ should be ‘cannibalized’. Reported by Graham Murray Campbell, April 1997.

Page 175

The title of Table 8.10 should be “Transitions in Banner occupation and organizational status for adult males, 1774-1873.” Reported by Xiangyun Wang, January 2014.

Page 263

The following, referred to in footnote 44, is missing from the references:

Pitkänen, Kari J. and James H. Mielke. 1993. “Age and sex differentials in mortality during two nineteenth century population crises.” European Journal of Population. 9:1-32.

Reported by Wang Xiangyun, February 2014.

Social Mobility and Demographic Behaviour: A Long-Term Perspective

The complete collection of papers from the December 2008 IUSSP Scientific Panel on Historical Demography seminar “Social Mobility and Demographic Behaviour: A Long-term Perspective” that Martin Dribe, Jan Van Bavel, and I organized at the UCLA California Center for Population Research (CCPR) is now available as a special collection at Demographic Research:  The meeting received generous support not only from the IUSSP, but also from a number of UCLA units, including CCPR the International Institute, the Dean of Social Sciences, and the Department of Sociology.  Participating scholars came from Asia, Europe, and the Americas, and represented a variety of disciplines, including sociology, economics, and history.

The papers had already appeared individually as they completed the review and production process, and with the addition of our introduction, the collection is now complete.

These papers all address the interaction of demographic behavior with social mobility.  Most of them apply advanced quantitative techniques to longitudinal historical population databases such as the Historical Sample of the Netherlands, but some used contemporary data.  Specific of the many questions that the papers addressed included changes over time in the influence of family size of origin on socioeconomic attainment, and interactions between social mobility and  assortative mating.  A detailed introduction to the papers is available here: