2016 Census First Release: Population and Dwelling Counts

Today is the day all Canadian data geeks have been waiting for. The first release of data from the 2016 Census is population and dwelling counts. The Canadian population grew by 5% between 2011 and 2016, topping 35 million. See below for more information and links to data.

Population size and growth in Canada: Key results from the 2016 Census

Proposed changes to StatCan designed to end political interference: Bains

The federal Liberals are moving on their promise to build a political firewall around Statistics Canada, but the fine print of the proposed legislative changes would maintain the government’s power to tell the agency how to do its job.

More info – http://news.gc.ca/web/article-en.do?mthd=index&crtr.page=2&nid=1166769

Proposed changes to StatCan designed to end political interference: Bains



First Suite of 2016 Census Geographic Products Released

Here are the first geography products for the 2016 Census. Just like Christmas.

2016 Census geographic products


Released: 2016-11-16

In preparation for the release of the 2016 Census results and coinciding with Geographic Information Systems Day, the first suite of geographic products released from the 2016 Census is available.

The products include maps and boundary files for the newly created aggregate dissemination areas, Boundary Files, Road Network File, Correspondence Files and the Interim List of Changes to Municipal Boundaries, Status, and Names. All are accessible from the Census webpage and are free to use.

Boundary Files are based on standard geographic areas in effect on January 1, 2016, and provide geographic limits used for census dissemination and a framework for mapping and spatial analysis. Digital files depict the full extent of the geographic areas, including the coastal water area. Cartographic files depict the geographic areas using only the major land mass of Canada and its islands.

Digital and cartographic boundary files, in Lambert projection, are available for provinces and territories, aggregate dissemination areas, census divisions, economic regions, federal electoral districts (2013 Representation Order), census consolidated subdivisions, census subdivisions, census metropolitan areas/census agglomerations, census tracts, dissemination areas and dissemination blocks.

The Road Network File is a digital representation of Canada’s national road network. Applications may include mapping, geocoding, geographic searching and area delineation. The file contains information such as street names, types, directions and address ranges. In addition, on each side of every street arc there are unique identifiers and names for the following levels of geography: province/territory, census metropolitan area/census agglomeration and census subdivision. Roads are ranked according to five levels of detail, suitable for mapping at various scales.

Correspondence Files (three in total) provide tabular data showing the correspondence between two vintages of geographic areas. Each correspondence file contains a unique identifier for the 2016 Census geographic area and the corresponding unique identifier for the 2011 Census geographic area. In addition, a relationship flag indicates the degree of correspondence between the geographic areas, facilitating a comparison between 2016 and 2011 census years.

The Interim List of Changes to Municipal Boundaries, Status and Names summarizes changes to municipal boundaries, status and names that occurred between January 2, 2011, and January 1, 2016. Municipal changes are based on information received through provincial and territorial gazettes, letters patent and orders-in-council.


Boundary Files are available in three formats: ArcGIS® Shapefile (.shp), Geography Markup Language (.gml) and MapInfo® (.tab). The 2016 Census Boundary Files (Catalogue number92-160-X, Catalogue number92-163-X, Catalogue number92-168-X, Catalogue number92-169-X, Catalogue number92-171-X), and Boundary Files, Reference Guide (Catalogue number92-160-G) are now available.

The Road Network File is available in three formats: ArcGIS® Shapefile (.shp), Geography Markup Language (.gml) and MapInfo® (.tab). The 2016 Census Road Network File (Catalogue number92-500-X), and Road Network File, Reference Guide (Catalogue number92-500-G) are now available.

The Aggregate Dissemination Area Reference Maps (Catalogue number92-640-X) are now available in HTML format. The Reference Maps and Thematic Maps, Reference Guide (Catalogue number92-143-G) is now available in HTML and PDF format.|

Correspondence Files are available in two formats: Comma Separated Variable (.csv) and text (.txt). The 2016 Census Correspondence Files (Catalogue number92-156-X), and Correspondence Files, Reference Guide (Catalogue number92-156-G) are now available.

The geography universe of the Census Dictionary (Catalogue number98-301-X) is now available in HTML format.|

The Interim List of Changes to Municipal Boundaries, Status and Names, 2011-2016 (Catalogue number92F0009X) is now available in HTML format.

2016 Census Collection Complete – Best Response Rate Ever!

Statistics Canada has announced that the collection phase of the 2016 Census is now complete and the overall response rate of 98.4 percent.

“The 2016 Census will provide high-quality information for virtually all communities across Canada,” said Chief Statistician Wayne R. Smith. “We thank Canadians for making this the best census since 1666.”

First results from the Census will be published in February 2017 and continue until November 2017.

Canadians’ overwhelming response enables ‘best ever’ Census in 2016

2016 Census Program release schedule

2016 Census is Here!

People will have started receiving their 2016 Census forms this week (starting May 2, 2016). Apparently, Canadians are so excited, that they crashed the census website.

What’s your census personality type?

The census is coming this May and that means Canadians from coast to coast to coast will once again be asked to sharpen their pencils, charge their tablets or answer the door, to participate. In other words, it will be time to complete the census questionnaire, either online, by mail or in person.

How and when you complete the survey – whether you jump at the chance right away or wait until the very last minute – may have something to do with your personality.

See yourself in any of these?

Conscientious keeners: Darn it if these folks don’t race to fill in the census the day the letter arrives from Statistics Canada, usually around May 2, and complete it online the very same day. These are the people who help give Canada its reputation as a well-mannered nation that takes its civic obligations seriously.

File-o-files: These are folks who get the letter in the mail, file it away either physically or mentally, and know that, yes, they’ll get to it within a week or so during the prime return dates, which are between May 2 and 15.

Eleven is their favourite hour:  The only way to get these procrastinators to complete their census before the last deadline would be to first send the paper questionnaire and if that doesn’t work, send an Enumerator right to their door as of May 31. Actually, these last-minute filers are few in number considering that only 12.3 per cent of censuses are completed at the door. Most of us complete the census either online or by mail.

Seeing as Canada has one of the highest census return rates of any country (about 98 per cent, roughly the same completion rate as Australia), it’s clearly the case that Canadians have a strong sense of civic duty when it comes to completing the census – no matter what their personality type.

In the end, it all works out for the best because the information gathered every five years helps drive decisions about government programs and services for you, your family, your community and your work life as well.

Be a proud conscientious keener and complete your census questionnaire in early May! More information on the benefits of completing your census can be found online at www.census.gc.ca.