The 2020 Russian census will take place next month, with 33 questions asked of all residents of the country, including whether their accommodation includes indoor toilets and has an internet connection, but now on their income and with the right of everyone to refuse to answer any or all questions.
Pavel Smelov, the deputy director of Rosstat, the state statistical agency overseeing the count, says Russians will be able to choose to respond online or to enumerators face-to-face. Russian citizens will be asked 33 questions and migrant workers will be asked seven (kp.ru/daily/28330/4474977/).
Rosstat official says enumerators take people at their word. According to the census taker, “there aren’t that many pranksters. At the last census we had about a thousand representatives of fantastic nationalities like trolls and goblins, and there are women who give their age as less than what it is.
Russians can refuse to answer any question, but the one that seems to pose the most difficulty for people is their identity as members of such and such a nationality. If people refuse to answer, “we can’t force him to do it.” In this case, there will only be two lines filled, sex and age, given “we take administrative sources”. In 2010, around 5% refused to answer.
Rosstat is always recruiting enumerators because many people find the job too difficult. Each is responsible for interviewing 550 people. They are given computers and are paid 18,000 rubles (US $ 240) for a month’s work. Some people want to feed them but others mistreat them and too many enumerators quit.
The preliminary census results will be released in the second quarter of 2022 and the final results in the fourth quarter of the same year. It’s the 12e national census in the history of Russia. It is the third to be delayed from its scheduled time. The 1897 census and the 2000 census were delayed due to financial problems; this one because of the pandemic.