APLIC-International, The Communicator, Spring 1997, Issue #64

International Census Sources

Summary of Gera Draaijer's presentation on International Census Sources

By Sarah Kolda, Assistant Librarian, Population Research Library, Princeton University

[Click for the full text of Gera Draaijer's presentation]

Gera Draaijer, from the University of Texas Population Research Center [http://prc.utexas.edu/lib/libr.html] began her discussion with an overview of the International Census Collection. It is the mission of the Population Research Center to seek out and collect international censuses, and the center is considered the clearinghouse for censuses among APLIC-I member libraries. The Center has approximately 85% of all known census publications from countries around the world, in paper, microfilm, or CD-ROM. The acquisition of these censuses is quite difficult because:

Various methods are used in the attempt to acquire these censuses. Gera and her staff analyze publishing patterns (e.g. - is a census produced every 5,7, or 10 years?) and write to the countries with their requests. Some census are received on exchange. About 50% of the time they receive an invoice. Sometimes they receive no answer at all, and sometimes, after numerous unanswered requests, they will receive a census 5 years after their last correspondence!

Payment brings its own difficulties. In the past, countries accepted American dollars; now they require payment in their own currency. These currencies can be difficult to get in the middle of Texas!

The Center's census holdings information is available through the WWW (click here) [http://prc.utexas.edu/lib/icc/icc.html]. The holdings are organized by continent, United Nations geographical regions, and country. A feature which Gera hopes to add is the ability to search the contents of volumes, possibly by scanning in the table of contents of each volume and making them available.

Some future concerns mentioned by Gera:

Respectfully submitted by Sarah Kolda / kolda@opr.princeton.edu
Population Research Library
Office of Population Research
Princeton University

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