Archived – Program 3: Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics

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The program provides statistical information, analyses and services that measure changes in the Canadian population, its demographic characteristics and its conditions, and its agricultural sector, as well as the well-being of Aboriginal peoples, to serve as a basis for public and private decision making, research and analysis in areas of concern to the people of Canada. The program includes the Censuses of Population and Agriculture. The Census of Population provides detailed information on population sub-groups and for small geographical levels required to assess the effects of specifically targeted policy initiatives and serves as a foundation for other statistical surveys. It also provides population estimates, projections and in-depth information on special populations, such as operators of agriculture holdings and Aboriginal peoples. Population counts and estimates are used in determining electoral boundaries, distribution of federal transfer payments, and transfer and allocation of funds among regional and municipal governments, school boards and other locally based agencies within provinces. It meets statistical requirements specified constitutionally, and supports those in statutory requirements and regulatory instruments. All per capita measures in fiscal policies and arrangements and other economic analysis, as well as in program and service planning, come from this program's statistical information. Statistics produced range from demographic, social and economic conditions of the population, annual and quarterly estimates of the population, households and families and their projections to number and types of farms and farm operators, as well as the socio-economic conditions and well-being of Aboriginal peoples.

Table 1 Financial Resources - Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics ($ thousands)
This table shows, in full-time equivalents, planned and actual resources, and the difference between them for 2012/2013.
Total Budgetary Expenditures (Main Estimates) 2012/2013 Planned Spending 2012/2013 Total Authorities (available for use) 2012/2013 Actual Spending (authorities used) 2012/2013 Difference 2012/2013
66,796 66,796 69,895 62,233 4,563
Table 2 Human Resources - Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics (full-time equivalents)
This table shows, in full-time equivalents, planned and actual resources, and the difference between them for 2012/2013.
Planned 2012/2013 Actual 2012/2013 Difference 2012/2013
932 754 178
Table 3 Performance Indicators - Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics
This table shows expected results, performance indicators, targets and actual results.
Expected Results Performance Indicators Footnote 1 Targets Actual Results
Decision makers and users are informed on population counts and characteristics, and on agriculture. Net undercoverage for 2011 Census of Population Less than 3% The net undercoverage error for the 2011 Census of Population was estimated at 2.3%, an improvement from 2.7% reported for the 2006 Census.
Number of visits to CANSIM (excluding census) 37,520 101,980

Since CANSIM became a free resource in February 2012, the number of visits have increased. Many new tables have been created.
Number of media mentions 1,500 The target was 1,500; 1,301 media mentions were reported in 2012/2013, including print and online newspapers, radio and television. Of those, 459 were published in traditional (print) media.
Percentage of users having obtained what they needed 75% 87%
Percentage of major economic indicators that meet set levels of accuracy 95% Indicator not applicable in the Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics program. This program does not release any major economic indicators.
Percentage of major economic indicators released as planned 100% Indicator not applicable in the Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics program. This program does not release any major economic indicators.
Percentage of statistical outputs corrected after release 2007/2008 < 2.5%
2008/2009 < 2.5%
2009/2010 < 2.5%
2010/2011 < 2.5%
2011/2012 < 2.5%
2012/2013 < 1.5%
2007/2008 — 2.7%
2008/2009 — 2.5%
2009/2010 — 0.0%
2010/2011 — 0.0%
2011/2012 — 0.0%
2012/2013 — 0.0%
Percentage of projects completed within scope, time, and budget Continual increase
2012/2013 benchmark year: 90%
2012/2013: 100%

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned—Census, Demography and Aboriginal Statistics

  • In 2012/2013, Statistics Canada completed the release of results from the 2011 Census of Population and main results from the 2011 Census of Agriculture.
  • The Census of Population provides basic information on population and dwelling counts, which are the basis of the population estimates used in determining electoral boundaries, distributing federal transfer payments and transferring and allocating funds among regional and municipal governments, school boards and other local agencies within the provinces. For 2011, this data will be supplemented by the results of the National Household Survey, to be released in 2013 with details on mobility, ethnicity, labour, education, income, citizenship, immigration, transportation, and dwelling characteristics.
  • The Census of Agriculture provides a comprehensive picture of the agriculture sector at the national, provincial, territorial and subprovincial levels, and is part of the mandate of the Statistics Act. Economic data series derived from the Census serve as a benchmark for the annual estimates required by the System of National Accounts to form the agriculture component of gross domestic product required by the Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act.

Sub-program 3.1: Census of Agriculture

This program conducts the quinquennial Census of Agriculture, and produces and publishes economic series on the agriculture sector that flow to the System of National Accounts to form the agriculture component of the Gross Domestic Product and thereby satisfy requirements of the Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act. This program provides a comprehensive picture of the agriculture sector at the national, provincial and sub-provincial levels and is mandated by the Statistics Act.

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned—Census of Agriculture

  • In 2012/2013, Statistics Canada completed the release of the main results from the 2011 Census of Agriculture. Further results will be released in 2013/2014; namely, some short articles on selected aspects of agriculture in Canada and the results of the linkage of the Census of Agriculture and the NHS.
  • The 2016 Census Strategy Project continues Statistics Canada's regular process of reviewing and evaluating its statistical programs. The project thoroughly reviewed the Census of Agriculture: the objectives were to study options and deliver a recommendation to the government on the methodology of the 2016 program. The Census of Agriculture will undertake feasibility studies to identify and evaluate the potential use of other administrative data sources from both the private sector and government, which, in the future, may be able to replace portions of the census or survey data.

Sub-program 3.2: Demography

This program produces Canada's quarterly and annual post-censal and inter-censal population estimates used to satisfy the statutory requirements of the Canada Health and Social Transfers, Equalization and Territorial Formula Financing, Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act, Canada Pension Plan Act, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board Act, Canada Student Loans Act, and the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act. Population estimates are produced at three geographic levels; Canada, province and territory, as well as census division, census metropolitan area and economic region. Data include estimates of births, deaths, immigration, total emigration, change in non-permanent residents, and interprovincial and intraprovincial migration. For program and policy purposes such as pension and labour market planning and forecasting, population projections are also prepared following each census. Population estimates and projections are used by all levels of government, the private sector, researchers and non-government organizations.

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned—Demography

  • The Demography Statistics program continued to produce Canada's population estimates and projections, to provide analytical and subject-matter expertise on Census demographic characteristics, and to perform research and development related to these topics.
  • In 2012/2013, the program also contributed its expertise to the 2016 Census Strategy Project and to Statistics Canada's strategic priority of increasing the use of administrative data, both in the census program and elsewhere across the Agency.

Sub-program 3.3: Aboriginal Statistics

This program is responsible to provide subject matter expertise, coordination and integration in the collection, analysis and dissemination of data about Aboriginal people on topics such as education, use of Aboriginal language(s), labour activity, income, health, communication technology, mobility and housing conditions. In this capacity, it provides information, support and advice to federal departments, Aboriginal governments and organizations.

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned—Aboriginal Statistics

  • The Aboriginal Statistics program continued to provide subject-matter expertise, and to coordinate and integrate collection, analysis, and dissemination of data on a variety of topics related to Aboriginal people.
  • It also continued to deliver the Aboriginal Liaison Program, the mandate of which is to strengthen lines of communication among the First Nations, Métis, Inuit, and other stakeholders at the national, regional, provincial and community levels, including access to Statistics Canada's data, products and services related to Aboriginal peoples.
  • At the same time, the program is working to improve the data available for Aboriginal peoples: these data are neither as timely nor as complete as data for the general population. While the Census of Population and National Household Survey paint a broad picture of the Canadian people, more in-depth data from Aboriginal-specific surveys are needed to understand determinants and consequences of changes in areas such as education, employability, health and housing. In an attempt to fill some of the substantial data gaps regarding the Aboriginal population, including Registered Indians, Statistics Canada will continue to explore the potential of using administrative data sources, such as the Indian Register, for quality assessments of surveys and for other statistical purposes.

Sub-program 3.4: Census of Population

This program plans, develops and implements all collection, processing and dissemination of the periodic decennial and quinquennial censuses of population, Canada's national inventory of key socio-economic phenomena. The census provides a statistical portrait of Canada and its people. This program is the only reliable source of detailed data for small groups (such as lone-parent families, ethnic groups, industrial and occupational categories and immigrants) and for areas as small as a city neighbourhood or as large as the country itself. Because the Canadian census is collected every five years and the questions are similar, it is possible to compare changes that have occurred in the make-up of Canada's population over time. The census includes every person living in Canada on Census Day, as well as Canadians who are abroad, either on a military base, attached to a diplomatic mission, at sea or in port aboard Canadian-registered merchant vessels. Persons in Canada including those holding a temporary resident permit, study permit or work permit, and their dependents, are also part of the census. This program is mandated in many statutes and acts including the Statistics Act, Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act, Canada Elections Act, Federal–Provincial Fiscal Arrangements Act, Canada Council Act, Provincial Subsidies Act, Railway Relocation and Crossing Act, Industrial and Regional Development Act, Constitutional Amendments Act, Income Tax Act, Municipal Grants Act, Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security Act, and War Veterans Act.

Performance Analysis and Lessons Learned—Census of Population

  • In 2012/2013, Statistics Canada completed the release of results from the 2011 Census of Population.
  • For 2011, many of the questions that had traditionally been part of the mandatory Census of Population were asked on a voluntary basis in the NHS. The NHS was conducted simultaneously with the Census of Population, and the program shared staff and infrastructure with the census to reduce costs. The results of the NHS will be released during the 2013/2014 fiscal year. Statistics Canada will conduct thorough quality assessments on data to be released, and will communicate all available information on data quality to ensure that NHS data are used to their full potential.
  • For the 2011 Census of Population, the Internet response rate was 54.1%, placing Canada at the forefront, internationally, of Internet census-collection. Statistics Canada is well advanced in the development of a generalized infrastructure for Internet-based data collection capable of supporting business and household surveys, including the Census of Population.
  • The 2016 Census Strategy Project continued the process of regular review and evaluation of Statistics Canada's statistical programs. The project reviewed the approaches for population censuses that are used around the world, and evaluated their applicability to the Canadian context. The objective of these reviews was to study options and to deliver a recommendation to the federal government on the methodology of the 2016 census programs. Statistics Canada also evaluated every operational aspect of the censuses and the National Household Survey. The results from these evaluations were published on Statistics Canada's website in August 2012, and will be used to plan the 2016 Census program.

Note:

Footnote 1

See Section 4, Other items of interest, for indicator definitions.

Return to footnote 1 referrer

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