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Managing not-so-small Numbers

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The problem here is what to do with an N of 20? Comparative case studies effectively deal with up to five or so observations. Aggregate statistical studies can easily with hundreds and thousands of observations. But with an N of 20 is too large for detailed case comparisons and too small for the use of powerful statistical analyses. This article proposes a middle ground that weaves an argument from a combination of multiple regression equations and case histories. Multivariate outliers identify cases for historical analyses; and the exposure of data in bivariate scattergrams permits useful validity testing. The procedure is illustrated with analyses of modern Asian population policy changes.


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