Population census 2021 rehearsals start on Wednesday

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Statistics Estonia headquarters in Tallinnn. Source: Aili Vahtla/ERR

A month-long readiness test survey of the Population and Housing Census will start on December 30 and will be carried out by Statistics Estonia. Approximately 2,000 people across the country will participate.

The test survey is divided into two parts: e-census (December 30, 2020 – January 15, 2021) and the interview census (January 20–31, 2021) where interviewers call people who did not participate in the e-census or did not fill in the questionnaire correctly.

Everyone who receives a notification can answer the test questionnaire in Statistics Estonia's electronic environment eSTAT (estat.stat.ee) starting from midnight on December 30.

Director General of Statistics Estonia Mart Mägi said Statistics Estonia's expectation is that at least 70 percent of participants respond online, as appropriate for an 'e-state'.

"The test survey is important for the success of the 2021 population and housing census. Each person participating in the test survey will be able to give feedback to Statistics Estonia, which helps improve the census process before the main census. The main goal is to check the different survey methods and notifying of people, how people understand the questionnaire and how the technology functions," said Mägi.

Statistics Estonia will obtain the majority of the data necessary for the Population and Housing Census from state databases. People will only have to answer a few questions for which there are no answers in any of the registers.

Both, the test survey and the census itself will include questions on the knowledge of foreign languages and dialects, religion and limitations due to health problems.

Using register data saves people's time significantly: an e-questionnaire can be filled in about one person in less than ten minutes. Adults answer questions about themselves and parents can respond about minors living at the same address. 

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Editor: Helen Wright

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