First Impressions from the 2000 Census of China

Article appearing in Population and Development Review, Volume 27, Issue 4

The 2000 census of China has several notable innovations, including a sample long form containing detailed items on migration, housing, and employment. Preliminary data indicate rapid urbanization and continued rapid social change in the 1990s, and apparent success in the government’s drive to curtail population growth. Although a post-enumeration survey indicates that overall data quality is good, the rise of a mobile “floating population” and pressures of the birth planning program caused problems for the enumeration of migrants and infants. Data released to date have been silent on two important issues, fertility and rising sex ratios.