Quality Measurement of Administrative Data – Methods and Results for the Register-Based Census in Austria
Christopher Berka2, Stefan Humer2, Manuela Lenk1, Mathias Moser2, Henrik Rechta1, Eliane Schwerer1
1Statistics Austria; 2Vienna University of Economics and Business

In 2011 Austria will carry out its first register-based census. This issue raises a number of questions, the most important being, which administrative data are used and how reliable are they? We therefore investigate the quality of each attribute in each administrative data source. Special attention has to be given to meta information, e.g. for which purpose is a specified attribute recorded in the register or whether the administrative definition corresponds to the statistical definition. In the process of data merging other questions arise - How good is the linkage process? How do missing unique keys influence data quality?

The paper intends to give a evaluation of the quality framework for the register–based census in Austria. For the application we use several registers with special properties and compare them to a test census database, namely the labour force statistics. This database includes the most important attributes which are also used in the Austrian register-based Census. We provide results for different types of attributes (unique, multiple as well as derived attributes) and focus on the variation in the quality indicators.

Our findings show that some attributes are of high accuracy while others show a less satisfactory result regarding their quality indicator. This occurs because of differing coverage of attributes within different registers and other special properties. Based on our analysis we derive conclusions for further work.

Keywords: Administrative data; Register-based census; Quality assessment

Biography: Manuela Lenk is employed by Statistics Austria since 2004 and is in charge of the administration of the Register based census which is attributed to the Registers, Classifications and Methods Division since 2006. She acts as the Administrative Data Manager for Statistics Austria and is thereby responsible for the advancement and quality assurance of register-based statistics.

Within the scope of Statistics Austria's international activities she represents the census agenda to Eurostat and OECD.

Manuela Lenk holds a degree in social and economic science from the University of Vienna.