Data processing centre at the Department of Population in the Ministry of Immigration and Population in Nay Pyi Taw. Photo by Pyay Kyaw Myint/UNFPA Myanmar/2013

Data processing is a crucial and integral part of post-enumeration census activities. Data processing began as soon as the census data collection was completed and the questionnaires had arrived from the field offices at the Department of Population in Nay Pyi Taw.

Once the questionnaires arrived in Nay Pyi Taw the process of capturing, checking, editing, coding and tabulating the data began. A team of around 100 staff from the Department of Population worked on this phase of the census. Once the data was validated, it was analysed using scanners and computers, operated by skilled personnel. The questionnaires were specifically designed to be scannable, which allowed them to be processed more quickly. The scanning system functioned well and by October 2014, all the estimated 11.5 million forms had been captured.

The main census results were published in May 2015, providing much-needed data for planners and policymakers, universities, research centres, civil society, development partners and other data users to develop appropriate policies and programmes to improve the living standards of the people of Myanmar. Thirteen thematic reports, which provide a more detailed analysis of the census data and insight into the daily lives of the people of Myanmar, are in development. The first batch of thematic reports was published at the end of 2016, beginning of 2017.

Voices

Daw Khaing Khaing Soe, Deputy Director of the Department of Population in Nay Pyi Taw, was responsible for the data processing phase of the census. She led a team of 100 people. As a demographer, she felt that being part of the first census in 30 years was a major moment in her professional career. "We had to work really hard because sometimes we lacked capacity, but we had the commitment. We had a clear goal and we had to reach it." she said.