YEREVAN — After twice postponing a decennial census of the population due to the coronavirus pandemic, Armenia will hold it this year, with questionnaires for the first time to be filled in electronically.
According to the government, the third census of the population in the history of independent Armenia will be conducted from October 13 to October 22, with its results to be summarized within a year.
Authorities plan to spend about 1.5 billion drams, or some $3.7 million, on the event that will include visits to households and other data collection.
Armenia took its previous two population censuses in 2001 and 2011. It planned to conduct its third population census in 2020, but had to postpone it first until 2021 and then until 2022 because of the pandemic.
Vardan Gevorkyan, head of the population census department of Armenia’s Statistics Committee, told RFE/RL’s Armenian Service that a combined method will be used for the population census this time around.
“We will use data from the state register with a 25-percent sample to be interviewed. Electronic questionnaires will be filled in with the use of tablets. This is new for us. If earlier paper questionnaires were filled in and census takers visited all households, now 25 percent of the sample will be made automatically, using a computer, in other words, it will concern every fourth household,” the official said.
By law, answering questions during a population census in Armenia is mandatory. According to officials, people will be asked a total of 39 questions, including those about their marital status, education, occupation, health, housing conditions, the main sources of livelihood and so on. Among the questions will also be ones about the availability of a second citizenship and the place of permanent residence of absent family members.
“If people answer questions correctly, we will get the correct results. Of course, there may be deviations, because we are using the combined method for the first time. There will be certain differences between the data in the administrative register and the data that we will actually obtain, which is due to the fact that the register keeps records of registered citizens, while we are going to deal with actual residents,” Gevorkian said.
According to the 2011 population census, Armenia had a population of a little more than 3 million people, which was by some 200,000 people less than according to the results of the population census taken 10 years earlier.