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2011 Census Reconciliation Report - Households

1. Purpose

The purpose of this report is to compare the data on households and communal establishments that was published in Scotland's Census 2011, release 1B (on the Scotland's Census website) with household estimates and projections data published regularly by National Records of Scotland (NRS).

The 2011 Census is considered the most reliable source of statistics about the population and households in Scotland, as it is designed solely for the purpose of collecting these statistics and aims to collect data from every household in Scotland. The scale of the collection, however, means that data is collected only once every ten years. In order to produce statistics more regularly, NRS uses data from a range of administrative sources, such as Council Tax and NHS databases, to produce the household estimates and projections. However, as this data is not collected specifically for producing these estimates it is important to compare them to the census to confirm that these statistics are of sufficient quality to be of use.

The statistics that are compared in this report are the household estimates and estimates of average household size, published in 'Estimates of Households and Dwellings in Scotland', and estimates of the different sizes of household and residents in communal establishments, published in 'Household Projections for Scotland' (both available on the NRS website). Additional comparisons, covering a wider range of household estimates and projections data, will be published following further releases of data from Scotland's 2011 Census.

The household estimates and projections are used in a wide range of ways, mainly to inform local authority decisions about housing need and the provision of services (including housing, planning waste collections, community care and school provision). The statistics feed into the local authorities' development plans, including assessments of housing need and demand for the future. The statistics are also employed in land use allocation and planning, in land use and transport models and are used to help inform policy development.

The household estimates and projections are used directly and indirectly in the productions of certain statistics within the Scottish Government's Annual Government Expenditure and Revenues Scotland (GERS) publication and the quarterly Scottish National Accounts Project releases. They are also used to estimate the expected distribution of Council Tax income.

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