Department of Economic and Social Affairs

Statistics • COVID-19 response

Impact of COVID-19 on World Population and Housing Census Programme


This article is also available in Russian.

As part of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the United Nations Statistics Division, in its role as Secretariat of the 2020 World Population and Housing Census Programme, is compiling a country-by-country overview of the pandemic’s impact on census-taking activities in the year 2020. This information is updated daily with details provided by the census managers from countries.

Population and census programmes are complex data collection operations comprising a series of many interrelated activities. They require contacting and collecting information on the whole population of a country within a limited period of time.

The COVID-19 crisis creates unprecedented and sudden challenges for countries conducting population and housing censuses and other major statistical operations, disrupting data collection, processing, analysis and dissemination activities carried out by National Statistical Offices, forcing them to rapidly develop and adopt alternative ways of implementing them.