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Ethnicity as a Variable: An Assessment of Measures and Data Sets of Ethnicity and Related Identities

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  • Kyle L. Marquardt
  • Yoshiko M. Herrera

Abstract

type="main"> With the proliferation of new data sets and measures of identity-based diversity, especially regarding ethnicity, it is essential that scholars who use these data sets on “ethnicity” understand their theoretical underpinnings, as well as their points of convergence and divergence. We conduct a review of existing cross-national measures of ethnic diversity. Different data sets involve inclusion boundaries for groups that vary drastically, and operationalize the relationship between the enumerated groups and outcomes of interest in ways that have often unacknowledged theoretical implications. We describe the advantages and disadvantages of different data sets, and build on this description to point toward future directions in assessing the relationship between diversity and social phenomena, specifically focusing on the mechanisms that link groups to these outcomes. We also provide appendices listing the data sets discussed in the article, enabling scholars to conveniently access them.

Suggested Citation

  • Kyle L. Marquardt & Yoshiko M. Herrera, 2015. "Ethnicity as a Variable: An Assessment of Measures and Data Sets of Ethnicity and Related Identities," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 96(3), pages 689-716, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:socsci:v:96:y:2015:i:3:p:689-716
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    2. Andrea Vaccaro, 2022. "Ethnic dominance and exclusion: Unpacking cross-national data," WIDER Working Paper Series wp-2022-25, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).

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