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Metropolitan Knowledge Network

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Portland Metropolitan Area (Or.) -- Population, Oregon -- Population -- Statistics, Oregon -- Emigration and immigration -- Economic aspects, Population forecasting -- Oregon -- Portland Metropolitan Area


This article offers a descriptive overview of population dynamics in the Portland-Vancouver Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). The MSA includes five of Oregon’s 36 counties–Clackamas, Columbia, Multnomah, Washington, and Yamhill, as well as Clark and Skamania counties in the state of Washington (see Figure 1). (In 2007, the Portland-Vancouver-Beaverton MSA was redefined to include Skamania County in Washington. For the sake of comparability, we have therefore derived all historical data as if this definition has always applied. Because of this change, many of our historical numbers may have shifted since the last report on Oregon demography in the 2007 Metropolitan Briefing Book.)

The article describes current trends for population growth; the effect of births, deaths, and migration on population growth; and how the age, sex, and ethnic composition of the population are changing. We concentrate on describing population trends rather than speculating on the causes of population change or making population predictions. An understanding of population dynamics can inform policy-making, and we hope we can provide a solid basis of understanding for decision-makers and community members in the Portland region.


Appeared in Metropolitan Knowledge Network, a production of the Institute of Metropolitan Studies and the Population Research Center at Portland State University.

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