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Microcensus 2006

Research project AG/HH/117 (Research action AG)

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Description :

The Federal Public Service Economy, SME’s, Self-Employed and Energy – Statistics Division (Statistics Belgium) organised the first « General Census» in 1846. At present the Central Population Register provides the official population numbers, but the census continues to be the main source of socio-economic information in this country.

In the future, the classical census based on questionnaires will be replaced by consulting administrative registers. Thus, led by Scandinavian examples, Belgium will follow in the footsteps of a growing number of countries that have developped a cost-efficient alternative for the census by working closely together with the administrations.

The Microcensus 2006 project is part of scientific preparations for this transition. The project evolves around organising a first register-based trial census in a 20% sample of the population. It is adopted by the AGORA-program of the Belgian Science Policy Services as a coöperative network between Statistics Belgium and four university research teams. In the coming years, register data on education, labour, housing, demography and most other classic subjects of the census will be gathered, analysed and reported, in order to study the practical, organsiational and methodological aspects of a transition to a register-based census system in Belgium.

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