Last Population Census in Russia: Progress or Stagnation
Irina I. Eliseeva
Sociological Institute of RAS, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation; Department of Statistics and Econometrics, St. Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation

The declining of the population size in Russia had sharpened the actuality of the statistical measurement of demographical process. In this context, the second all-Russian population census was very important. It was held in October 2010 after the dramatic struggle between the opponents and supporters of the census. Taking into account the experience of the preliminary census in 2008 some changes were introduced into the program of the census and its organization. However, it was done on the eve of the census without any public discussion. In addition, this census coincided with changing the leadership of the Federal State Statistics Service of the Russian Federation (Rosstat). There was the intrigue associated with the former head of Rosstat who had provided the intention of the census. He was changed by the person who was a supporter to postpone the census until to the end of economic crisis. The cost of the census was equal to about 540 millions Euros (it is less than in Germany, where the census was held in the same time). The expedition method that is very archaic was applied as a method of data collection. It was explained by the low level of the trust of population to the government and the census as an official survey and absence of population data-base. According to the program the full characteristics were registered for about 70% of the population, the other part of population (30%) was not available for interviewers and these data were collected from the passport-service and the data are not complete. The main problems of the census were provoked by the specific distribution of the population on the territory of Russia: the concentration in the cities with the population over one million (Moscow, St.Petersburg, Perm, Nirzniy Novgorod, Samara and others) and migration. We wait significant differences between the census and current account figures. Finally, we could conclude that the last census was progressive. It was the first time when the all-Russian population census was in the frame of the round of censuses for many other countries (according to the recommendation of UN). The first results of the census will be ready in April of 2011. They will show a new structure of population of Russia, the types of households, the living conditions, employment and so on. Nevertheless, we are forced to recognize the archaic way of the data collection and necessity of using the modern techniques.

Keywords: All-Russian population census; population; demographical process; Federal State Statistics Service of the Russian Federation

Biography: Doctor of Sciences, Corresponding Member of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia, Director of Sociological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Russia, Head of the Department of Statistics and Econometrics of St. Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance, Russia.