A Bayesian reconstruction of historical population in Finland, 1647-1850

By Miikka Voutilainen, Jouni Helske and Harri Högmander in Bayesian Inference Time Series

June 9, 2020



This article provides a novel method to estimate historical population development. We review the previous literature on historical population time series estimates and propose a general outline to address the well-known methodological problems. We use a Bayesian hierarchical time series model that allows us to integrate parish level dataset and prior population information in a coherent manner. The procedure provides us with model-based posterior intervals for the final population estimates. We demonstrate its applicability by estimating long-term Finnish population development from 1647 onwards. This puts Finland among the very few countries with an annual population series of this length available.

Posted on:
June 9, 2020
1 minute read, 101 words
Bayesian Inference Time Series
Population Modelling
See Also: