Economics » Population » Census

Problems Associated with Conducting Census

Problems Associated with Conducting Census

  1. Cost of Conducting Census: One of the biggest challenges associated with conducting census is the enormous financial costs of conducting the exercise.
  2. High Illiteracy Rate: Countries with large properties of their populations being illiterates face a great challenge during the conducting of censuses. For example, in certain very remote parts of the world where illiteracy rates are extremely high, many people tend to run away from census officials when they arrive to count them. As a result of illiteracy, many of these people feel that it is a taboo to count human beings. Sometimes, these illiterates also feel that the government uses counting of people as a strategy to raise the taxes of households. They, therefore, give wrong information to the census officials or run away from their villages when these census officials come to count them. This often leads to inaccurate population figures.
  3. Inadequate Infrastructural Facilities: There are certain places in the world where it is very difficult to undertake efficient population census because of poor infrastructural facilities such as bad roads, inaccessible roads, or insufficient roads that connect the towns and villages. In view of this, many census officials cannot reach these very remote and inaccessible places to count the people and therefore, just make estimations of the number of people living in such areas. The end result is inadequate population figures after the census.
  4. Traditional and Religious Beliefs: In many underdeveloped parts of the world, where traditional beliefs are the order of the day, census officers face some challenges. Most of the people in such areas deliberately decide not to make themselves available to be counted because of their strong traditional beliefs. Some of these beliefs consider it an abomination to count people while they are still alive. Some also consider it a taboo to let women be counted, or to let women count men. These create problems in the census exercise.
  5. Corruption: Corruption during census can make it difficult to have an efficient population census exercise that provides accurate population figures. Over the years, there have been countless stories of corrupt census officials collecting monies needed for conducting census but pocketing these monies and sitting in their offices where they write down imaginary figures. This automatically leads to inaccurate population figures of a country. Corruption is one of the biggest reasons certain countries find it very difficult conducting successful censuses and obtaining reliable census data.
  6. Insufficient Census Experts: Another problem associated with conducting censuses in certain parts of the world is the insufficient number of professionals with the knowledge and experience of conducting censuses. More often than not, governments of underdeveloped countries do not have sufficient experienced census officers, demographers and population experts to effectively handle the task of conducting population censuses. As a result of this, these countries end up using inexperienced census officers for the job. This often leads to an inefficient census exercise that provides inaccurate population figures.
  7. Poor Demographic Maps: Because of demographic maps that are not reliable, it becomes very difficult for the authorities to know all the remote areas in the country and go there to conduct the census exercise. The problem with unreliable or poor demographic maps is that some remote villages might not appear on them. Such areas, therefore, end up not being visited by census officials.

Continue With the Mobile App | Available on Google Play

[Attributions and Licenses]


This is a lesson from the tutorial, Population and you are encouraged to log in or register, so that you can track your progress.

Log In

Share Thoughts