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Jakarta Post

Indonesia's 2020 census to recruit 390,000 volunteers, keen to follow S. Korea footsteps

  • Made Anthony Iswara

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Fri, February 14, 2020   /   02:11 pm
Indonesia's 2020 census to recruit 390,000 volunteers, keen to follow S. Korea footsteps An officer from Statistics Indonesia (BPS) signs a joint commitment to support the population census at the 2020 population census coordination meeting in Pendapa city, Tegal, Central Java, on Feb. 6. (Antara/Oky Lukmansyah)

Indonesia will hire around 390,000 volunteers starting early April to help the 2020 census fieldwork in July as it aims to replicate South Korea’s census success.

Statistics Indonesia (BPS) will combine door-to-door interviews and data gathering from the Home Ministry’s Population and Civil Registration Directorate General for the 2020 census, making it the country’s first time to use such a method.

However, BPS head Suhariyanto said on Thursday that the country could continue to improve its administrative system so that the agency would solely rely on the directorate general to obtain data in the future, similar to how South Korea executed its census.

“I hope that we will one day reach that point. We need to take examples from those who are progressive because administrative data is really important,” Suhariyanto told reporters in Jakarta.

The population census is done every 10 years and aims to update data the country’s demographics, which are crucial to supporting certain policy interventions, Suhariyanto said.

The 2015 intercensal survey projected that Indonesia would have a population of around 266.9 million in 2019 and leap to 319 million by 2045.

The 2020 census will provide insight on the population, in addition to age and gender composition, among other things. Such information could help Indonesia keep track of its demographic dividend, which the country is expected to benefit from with its huge working-age group – projected to reach 70 percent of the total population by 2030.

“The 2020 census will put BPS’ credibility and name on the line,” Suhariyanto said in a separate press statement on Friday.

He said the online census would be available from Feb. 15 to March 31. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo and several governors will be among the first to put their data into the system tomorrow, he said.

People can register online through BPS’ website, which will require family card and ID card numbers. 

The questionnaire will have 22 questions that range from the registrant's name, birth date, place of birth, religion, education level, to occupation. No questions on earnings or related questions will be asked.

In July, BPS volunteers accompanied by neighborhood unit (RT) heads will then record those who have yet to register online. Suhariyanto said that it aimed to obtain census results by January next year.

He added that the BPS had worked with the National Cyber and Encryption Agency (BSSN) and Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB), among others, to ensure data security during online registration.