Earlier this year, the Center for the Study of Immigrant Integration (CSII) at the University of Southern California released an interactive map that “estimates of the size and region-of-origin composition of eligible-to-naturalize adults in the United States,” and provides demographic breakdowns which help make decisions on how to target naturalization efforts.
The CSII map, developed by Professor Manuel Pastor and his team, adds to earlier efforts by the Center for Migration Studies (which you can read about here and here), among others, to determine the characteristics of immigrants eligible to naturalize and the areas in which they live.
Using a methodology that differs somewhat from the Center for Migration Studies, CSII estimated the number of immigrants who are eligible for naturalization in states, metropolitan areas, counties and Public Use Microdata Areas (PUMAs), which is a Census-defined area containing a minimum of 100,000 persons.
The map can be filtered by geography level, and further by the total number of immigrants eligible to naturalize, the number of immigrants eligible to naturalize as a percentage of all adults and the percentage that the citizen voting age population would increase if all immigrants eligible to naturalize did so. A breakdown by region of birth for citizenship-eligible immigrants is also included.
CSII analyzed the raw data to compare characteristics of immigrants who have naturalized and those who have not, revealing information like country of origin and language ability of those who have naturalized verses those who have not.
Using a flow analysis, the CSII team compared the characteristics of immigrants who naturalized verses those who didn’t for any given year. Using this analysis, the income of both groups can be compared without concern for the bias introduced by the fact that naturalization increases income over time.
This data map is a terrific tool to further fine-tune our efforts to encourage naturalization and helps us further understand the barriers faced by immigrants who have not yet taken the step.