IDI Census of Population & Dwellings data (CENSUS)



IDI Census of Population & Dwellings data (CENSUS)


The New Zealand Census of Population and Dwellings (2013 Census) is the count of people and dwellings enumerated by census on census night. It provides a snapshot of our society at a point in time. The first full census in New Zealand was conducted in 1851, then every three years until 1887, from which time the census has been conducted every five years, with only four exceptions. Tuesday, 5 March 2013 marks the 33rd New Zealand census. Population information from the census helps determine how billions of dollars of government funding is spent in the community. It is used to make decisions about services such as:

• hospitals
• schools
• roads
• public transport
• recreational facilities.

Census information is used to decide electorate boundaries. It is also used by councils, community groups and businesses to plan for the future. Several topics must, by law, be included in the New Zealand Census of Population and Dwellings. Under the Statistics Act 1975 we are required to ask every person in New Zealand on census day for their:

• name and address
• sex
• age
• ethnicity.

For every occupied dwelling in New Zealand on census day we must ask for that dwelling's:

• location
• number of rooms
• ownership
• number of occupants on census night.

Census collects information about Māori descent and the usual residence of all people living in New Zealand to help determine electorate boundaries (required under the Electoral Act 1993).
The census also includes other topics because they produce information of significant value to New Zealand. These are weighted with other factors when deciding what questions to ask, such as:

• whether the census is the most appropriate method of collecting the information
• cost of collecting the data
• quality of the data produced
• public acceptability
• burden on the New Zealand public
• continuity with previous censuses.

Statistics NZ consults widely with the public about the questions asked in the census.


Why conduct a census?

Every country needs to have an accurate count of its population. Most take a census at regular intervals to produce this information. In New Zealand, census information is used by government agencies, local authorities, iwi, businesses, community organisations, and the public. It is used for policy-setting and implementation, research, planning, and other decision-making. The census is the primary source of information used for determining the number of general and Māori electorates, along with data from the corresponding Māori Electoral Option. It is also relied on for allocating public funding, especially in areas such as health, education, housing, and transport. The census in New Zealand is undertaken under the authority of section 23(1) of the Statistics Act 1975. The act outlines statutory topics, and other topics that can be included in the census at the discretion of the Government Statistician. Who is counted? The census aims to count everyone who is in New Zealand on census night. This includes everyone on New Zealand soil, on a vessel in New Zealand waters, or on a passage between New Zealand ports. Overseas residents and other people in diplomatic residences in New Zealand, including housekeeping staff, uniformed military personnel, and members of diplomats' families are included in the census, as are foreign military personnel and their families located in New Zealand on census night (including people on foreign warships in New Zealand territorial waters on census day).

Significant events impacting this study series

New for 2013 Census compared to 2006

On 1 November 2010, the Auckland Council unitary authority was created when the Auckland Regional Council and the following seven territorial authority areas were amalgamated:

  • Rodney district
  • North Shore city
  • Waitakere city
  • Auckland city
  • Manukau city
  • Papakura district
  • Franklin district.

As a result of the amalgamation, 21 local board areas were created. Data is provided for Auckland Council and also for the 21 local board areas within Auckland Council.


Related Documentation

2013 information by variable


Helps with understanding our census data, covering matters such as non-response rates, comparability over time and data quality.


2013 Census variable quality rating scale


Explains the ratings used to describe the quality of variables output from the 2013 Census for the above link. It is a guide for data users.


Statistics New Zealand classifications and related statistical standards


Contains 2013 Census classifications, statistical standards and information about the geographic hierarchy we use. It also contains information on the classification and coding process, questionnaire module, output sets, related classifications and standards and a glossary section that contains definitions for all terminology referred to in this document.


2013 Census data user guide


An easy-to-use reference for people using data from the 2013 Census of Population and Dwellings. It answers some of the common questions you may have about census data. The questions relate to the collection and processing of census data, as well as its interpretation and use.


2013 Census Classifications lookup files


Contains most of the lookup classification files referred to in this Data Dictionary.





Census, Population

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34 30/11/2021 4:14:14 PM