Document Type

Student Research

Publication Date



Homelessness -- Oregon -- Portland, Homelessness -- Literature Reviews


This literature review on homeless count methods provides a brief history of homelessness in the U.S., an account of count efforts, and an overview of methods used. It illustrates that no method is capable of providing a comprehensive count of the homeless, and all methods have inherent disadvantages that often rely upon flawed assumptions. The practical impact of these counts on policy is substantial. Therefore, this review should encourage discussion as to what data communities need for policy and program development and implementation, and whether homeless counts actually fulfill this need.


Copyright Portland State University Homelessness Research & Action Collaborative 2019.

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