Census to be conducted mainly online, after 100 years

12 February 2021

A centenary of the first Czechoslovak population census, which was carried out on 15 February 1921, will be on Monday. Up to now, nine censuses have been conducted in our territory since the formation of Czechoslovakia. Therefore, the 2021 Census will be the tenth and for the first time ever it will be conducted mainly online.

The first census in an independent Czechoslovakia was carried out by a newly established State Statistical Office. According to the results of the 1921 Census, in the territory of the present-day Czech Republic there was a population of 10 009 480. Ninety years later, according to the 2011 Census, 10 437 000 people lived in Czechia. During the first Czechoslovak census, a list of dwellings (flats) was also made and that was done in agglomerations that had a population of at least 20 thousand. “To survey nationality of the population was considered to be the most important. It is because it was to confirm, to a certain extent, that foundation of an independent Czechoslovak Republic was justified. Nationality was surveyed in compliance with a new definition derived from the so-called affiliation with a tribe while mother tongue was considered to be an external feature of that. The previous definition of nationality determined according to language used in communication was to be replaced by that, as it was in favour of German language,” Marek Rojíček, President of the Czech Statistical Office, explains.

An important characteristic was also occupation of the population. Surveyed occupations were then compared to occupations that were recorded in 1914 in order to find out social and professional changes between the pre-war and post-war period. The population was surveyed by census sheets for households, as it was usual for pre-war censuses. Data were processed on Powers punched-card machines.

In a safe and modern manner

The most modern census in the history of the Czech Republic awaits us this year, 100 years after the first census (that took place in the First Republic), and it will start on 27 March. Its first phase, which is prepared as an online census, will be absolutely contactless and, with regards to the epidemic situation, also the safest. From 27 March to 9 April, people will be able to get counted via a web or a mobile application comfortably from their homes without the need for further contact with a census enumerator (census officer). The only condition for getting counted online is to have an access to the Internet. Currently, over 80% of the population have an access to the Internet.

“The Online Census, besides being fast and simple and the fact that it can be filled in anywhere where there is an internet connection, has many other advantages on top of that. For example that one member of a family that is the most experienced in using the Internet can fill in census forms (questionnaires) for the whole family. The others just have to provide him/her with their data and he/she will enter them into the computer, tablet, or a mobile phone,” Marek Rojíček points out advantages of an online census. The online census is also ideal in terms of protection against the spread of coronavirus. It is because one does not have to go anywhere, meet anybody, takeover or handover census forms and be afraid of potentially contracting the coronavirus. You can get counted online comfortably from your home even if quarantined at that time.

Those unable to get counted online for any reason, will fill in a usual paper census form (questionnaire) in the second phase of the Census, which will take place from 17 April to 11 May. Under very strict sanitary measures, a citizen will obtain the paper form from census enumerators (census officers) together with an envelope to put the form in. It will be possible to drop filled in forms to any mail, to send them to a Post Office box of the Czech Post, or to hand them over on a contact point of the Census. For any information about the 2021 Census, see www.scitani.cz.


Jolana Voldánová

2021 Census spokeswoman

Mobile phone number: +420 
704 659 357
e-mail: jolana.voldanova@scitani.cz


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