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Statistical Models and Causal Inference by Jasjeet S. Sekhon, David Collier, David A. Freedman

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5On “Solutions” to the Ecological Inference Problem

With Stephen P. Klein, Michael Ostland, and Michael R. Roberts

        ABSTRACT. In his 1997 book, King announced “A Solution to the Ecological Inference Problem.”King’s method may be tested with data where truth is known. In the test data, his method produces results that are far from truth, and diagnostics are unreliable. Ecological regression makes estimates that are similar to King’s, while the neighborhood model is more accurate. His announcement is premature.

5.1  Introduction

        Before discussing King (1997), we explain the problem of “ecological inference.” Suppose, for instance, that in a certain precinct there are 500 registered voters of whom 100 are Hispanic and 400 are non-Hispanic. ...

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