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France’s 2014 census kicks off

"Gathering today's stats to build tomorrow's future."

“Gathering today’s stats to build tomorrow’s future.”

The French government’s national census for 2014 started January 14th.

The news channel BFMTV has more information here (in French).

I’ve summed up the basics below.

There is also a (French) FAQ guide on the official Insee census site here.

The census allows the government to determine the population of France’s communes (villages, towns, cities), as well as key statistics associated with more than 350 different legislative and regulatory codes related to citizen issues (size of municipal government, budget, how many pharmacies per town…).

About 9 million French households will be concerned this year, as since 2004 the national census has functioned on a rolling basis every year. This means that a household that is part of a sample of the population will on average be surveyed a maximum of once every 5 years. (Before then historically, the census was carried out on a larger scale every 8-9 years nationally).

It is being carried out by 23,000 census agents recruited through different town halls, distributing surveys through the French National Institute for Statistics and Economic Studies (L’Insee). These agents will have ID cards with a French flag.

They will be distributing 2 kinds of papers:
1) une “feuille de logement” – “Residential property sheet” which will collect info on the person’s property (house, apartment, condo…).

2) un “bulletin individuel” – “Individual ballot” which each person at the residency will fill out regarding their individual profiles.
Here’s the timing:

For villages/smaller towns: This year’s census starts today January 14 through February 15 for the 7,135 communes of France with fewer than 10,000 residents.

For larger towns/cities: The census goes from January 14 to February 22 for the 983 towns and cities that have more than 10,000 residents, as well as in the Antilles and French Guiana.

For Réunion: The census goes from January 22 to March 8.

Paper and Web versions
Those taking the census can fill out the papers and give them directly to the census agents, or bring them to their local town hall as well as l’Insee. They can also opt for the web version on the aforementioned site www.le-recensement-et-moi.fr for 412 different communes where that option is available. (In 2015, all communes will be available to access the web version).

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