Scotland’s Census Ready to Move to the Next Level

A census survey will be launched in Scotland on 13th of June to look in greater detail and add to the results gathered from Scotland’s 2022 census returns.

The Census Coverage Survey is conducted door-to-door by staff carrying identification and ensures that a comprehensive and accurate picture of return rates across the country has been recorded.

NRS (National Records for Scotland) reports that there was a return rate of 87.5%, or 2,284,582 households of Scotland’s 2022 Census. 28 of Scotland’s 32 local authority areas achieved return rates of 85% or higher, and 5 of these exceeded 90%.

Professor James Brown, ABS Professor of Official Statistics at University of Technology Sydney, is leading an international steering group which will provide advice as to the NRS on census work.

Paul Lowe, Registrar General for Scotland and Chief Executive, National Records of Scotland said:

“I am delighted to be able to draw on the expertise of Professor Brown and of such a distinguished group of statisticians and experts in census and administrative data.

“We have secured a good level of national census returns and coverage. I am pleased that the International Steering Group has acknowledged that we are in a strong position to move forward and I welcome the contributions they will make to steering our statistical and methodological work over the next few months. This will support us to deliver our census coverage survey, and our work to identify the appropriate administrative data which can support our quality assurance work.

“Our wide range of customers and users of census data can be further reassured that this support and advice from the Steering Group will help NRS to produce a high quality census data set – one that will ultimately provide them with the right statistical outputs they need to inform future service planning.”

The first results from the 2021 Census conducted in England and Wales will be published on 28th of June 2022. 20 million households in England and Wales took part.

Like Scotland, Northern Ireland conducts its own census. It was held in 2021 and the first results of that are already available.

The Northern Ireland 2021 census showed an increase in population of over 90,000 people from 1.811 million to 1.903 million or by 5%.

  • 967,000 females
  • 936,000 males.

The data shows an ageing demographic with the highest increase in population in those aged 65+. It rose by over 60,000 to nearly one-third of a million people – a near 25% increase on 2011

Just over 80% of census 2021 Northern Ireland returns were made online. There was also a targeted push on the door step for those who had not returned their census . Over 375,000 in person visits were made. All the collection approaches resulted in an overall household and person response rate of 97% and a communal establishment response rate of over 99%. This is the highest census response rate since 1991, the corresponding figures were 94% household and 92% person in 2011.

The collection of census data is vital for future planning especially for the provision of health and social services, housing, educational needs and other public services.

Fiona Grahame

1 reply »

  1. The Scottish census was delayed by a year because we were told that it would be problematic for the population to complete it on line during the pandemic.
    This was despite it being completed more successfully in the rest of the UK when Covid was at its peak.

    We all know the real reason it was delayed was to make out Scotland was separate from the rest of the UK.
    Now they are attempting to make out it was a success. This government is all about spin and no substance, which is why we have been going nowhere for the past decade and more.

    They have now caved in to the Rail Unions. Welcome to 21st century Scotland…..back to the 70’s.

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