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October 1989

Developing statistics to meet society’s needs

Janet L. Norwood, Deborah P. Klein

Three historical illustrations show how Government agencies adapt to changing social and economic needs by developing new concepts and methods. As conditions in society have changed, new information needs have emerged, and new classification schemes and innovative approaches to the conceptual framework and the definitions within it have been developed and modified to meet those needs. This article discusses contributions of Federal agencies to statistical development.

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