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st: RE: Cluster analysis on survey data


From   "Nick Cox" <n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk>
To   <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   st: RE: Cluster analysis on survey data
Date   Thu, 28 Aug 2008 16:55:42 +0100

What is BRFSS? 

On the main question, it is evident that -cluster- does not support any
kind of weights, so that is one short answer. 

I am unclear on how in principle any kind of weights could inform
cluster analysis. Although there are different recipes, cluster analysis
as implemented in Stata is in essence a more or less elaborate way of
quantifying information on similarity or differences between
observations in a multivariate space. 

Suppose for example that I am in a survey, you are too, and several
other people are as well. Cluster analysis offers methods for plotting
me, you and the others in a space. How are those differences affected by
the sampling design behind who is and who isn't in the dataset,
particularly as no parameter estimation or hypothesis testing is
involved? 

Nick 
n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk 

Jessica M. Tullar, PhD

I am using a BRFSS dataset and therefore it has a complex sampling
design. I would like to describe who are the kinds of people that report
medical debt and medical bankruptcy and therefore thought cluster
analysis might be appropriate. 

I've looked through all the manuals and even searched survey analysis
and on cluster analyses and can't find the answer. Is there a way to
perform a cluster analysis and account for the survey weights? 

A second possibility would involve creating a new representative dataset
on which to perform the standard cluster analysis. How best would one
create a new dataset using the survey weighting which would approximate
the population?

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