According to statistical estimates, 87 percent of the Czech population filled in and sent their data electronically in the 2021 census. Statisticians received over 4.2 million forms online and 795,000 paper forms have arrived by post. The census took place from March 27 to May 11. The first results will be at the turn of this year and next year.
Two weeks before the census, the contact information center became operational on 12th of March. According to census spokeswoman Jolana Voldánová, the center received 266,245 phone calls. A total of 53 percent of them were managed by the automatic machine. “A combination of texts read by a professional speaker and voice synthesis was used for the voice machine so that it was not possible to recognize that there was no human on the phone,” the spokeswoman said. Operators replied by e-mail to 22,686 questions, and another 264,845 were answered by a chatbot.
According to the original plan, the electronic census was to last only two weeks. After that, only those who did not fill in the data online had to receive paper forms from the census commission. However, the launch of the electronic system was accompanied by problems, and on the first day, it had an outage. The CZSO then announced that the website or application could be used for census until 11th of May. “The system worked continuously for 46 days and, apart from the outage shortly after the start of live operation, it worked reliably until the end of the census. Therefore, the total score is 1096 hours without failure to 8 hours of outage,” the CZSO said.
The census is held once every ten years and is obligatory for all inhabitants of the Czech Republic. However, many countries obtain data from registers and query only a sample of several thousand people. Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Slovenia, and Austria, for example, are doing so. Czech statisticians also considered it, and assessed 37 registers for data. However, they found that they lacked the necessary data. Compared to the last census in 2011, people filled in about half of the data. At the next census in 2031, the CZSO would like to ensure that only a portion of the country would have to participate, the chairman of the office Marek Rojíček said recently.