2940.0 - Census of Population and Housing: Details of Overcount and Undercount, Australia, 2016 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 27/06/2017   
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Undercount and overcount are the primary measure of Census coverage. They provide users with an assessment of the completeness of Census counts and a measure of Census imputation performance. As such, undercount and overcount can be used to evaluate the effectiveness of Census collection procedures and data processing, so improvements can be made for future Censuses.

Net undercount is a key component in rebasing the Estimated Resident Population (ERP) for 30 June of the Census year. Rebasing is done by adding the net undercount from PES to the new Census population counts, before applying further demographic adjustments in order to recalibrate ERP to the latest Census.

Accurate estimates of the resident population are required for a wide range of uses including:

  • the allocation of seats to states and territories in the House of Representatives of the Australian Parliament
  • the distribution of Commonwealth payments to states and territories
  • demographic, social and economic research
  • policy research, evaluation and government reporting.

For more information on the calculation of ERP for 30 June 2016, based on results from the 2016 Census and PES, see the ABS publication Australian Demographic Statistics, December 2016 (cat. no. 3101.0), released on 27 June 2017.