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South Africa in line for first digital census

Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) is set to conduct a trial to the first digital census to be conducted in the country.

“The Census 2021 Trial, scheduled to start from 10 August to 6 September 2020 in selected areas around the country will test online and telephonic data collection to prepare for remote data collection in the upcoming Census 2021,” said Stats SA.

Census 2021 is the first population count to introduce digital census taking through the use of online and telephonic data collection platforms, which will also allow respondents to complete the census questionnaire on their own.

The telephonic data collection makes provision for respondents to participate in the census with the assistance of a Stats SA call centre agent.

The increased use of cellphones and the current technology-driven digital era will minimise the challenge of reaching hard to access communities, thus allowing more people to participate in the census.

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Stats SA said participating in the Census 2021 Trial requires respondents to register through a platform that is available on Stats SA online and social media platforms.

Respondents may also contact Stats SA via our toll-free number 0800 110 248 for further assistance.

A census provides small area data on demographics, socio-economic and living conditions of the population.

It assists with forming the basis for active community participation in reviewing access to public services among other issues. The government and different sectors of society for policy-formulation, decision making and planning, use data collected through a census.

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