Russia launches its first online census

1 October

The service will be available on the Public Services portal from 1 to 10 October 2018

Between 1 and 31 October Russia will run the Pilot Census (PPN 2018) as a key stage in the preparation of the All-Russian Census 2020, the central statistical event of the decade. PPN 2018 will be the most unique and comprehensive of all previous pilot censuses and will involve more than half a million people in ten pilot areas.  
The key feature of the Pilot Census is that it will rely on multiple innovative approaches powered by modern technology. “These approaches will help develop a system to collect and process data for the All-Russian Census in 2020, and the system will become part of the single national data space of the future”, said Deputy Minister for Russia’s Economic Development Savva Shipov.
During the first All-Russian Pilot Census stage, between 1 and 10 October, any Russian resident who has a confirmed account on the Unified Public Services Portal ( will be able to complete an electronic census form online, a service implemented and technically supported by RTLabs, a Rostelecom subsidiary. This will be the first online census to be run in Russia. “This pilot census is taken to see how fit the Russians are for an online census and to fine-tune the software for the upcoming All-Russian Census,” said Head of Rosstat Alexander Surinov.
“Making an e-census service available on the Unified Public Services portal is an essential step as we change over to a fundamentally different level of communication between the citizens and the state. E-government’s digital services have already gone a long way to make public services better accessible and to help people save their time and money, including those in faraway areas and with limited mobility. In the future, the e-census tool could be rolled out for referenda and opinion polls,” added Mikhail Bondarenko, General Director of RTLabs.
“Data garnered through censuses helps shape social and economic policies. Besides, a census is the only source to learn about the national and linguistic composition of the country’s population,” explained Alexander Surinov.
Another technical novelty of the 2018 PPN will be the use of tablets. Census takers will use them in some regions during the second stage of the Pilot Census between 16 and 31 October. This regional stage will cover ten pilot areas with a total population of approx. 550,000. For the first time ever, the pilot census in hard-to-reach areas will be conducted against regular deadlines in October.