Demography, population stock & balance - Population and demography

BAckground information: DEMOGRAPHY, POPULATION STOCK & BALANCE

Icon Demography

What information can I find in this section?

This section provides information and demographic data on:

  • Population
  • Demographic balance
  • Live births
  • Deaths
  • Marriages and divorces

by various breakdowns such as sex, age, country of birth, citizenship, regional level; and

  • Demographic indicators such as crude rates, total fertility rates, life expectancy, median ages, etc.

Which demographic statistics are available in the Eurostat database?

Eurostat publishes demographic data and indicators at European, national and regional levels.

The length of the available time series depends on the population breakdowns: the longest time series for national data start in 1960 and for regional data in 1990.

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Information on content of different database folders 

  • Main population indicators include annual indicators on:

a) Population balance, e.g. total and average population, total and natural population change, population turnover, crude rates (total population change, birth, death, natural change, etc.);

b) Population structure, e.g. proportion of population by age groups, median age of population, variants of age dependency ratios , women per 100 men;

c) Population density.

  • Population on 1 January provides a rich collection of annual data by various breakdowns, such as age, sex, country of birth, citizenship, educational attainment, etc.
     
  • Fertility and Mortality provides annual data on vital events, including fertility indicators (e.g. total fertility rate, median and mean age of women at childbirth), mortality indicators (e.g. life expectancy at given age, age specific death rate, etc.)  and more frequent data on deaths by week and excess mortality by month.
     
  • Marriages and divorces provides annual data and indicators on e.g. crude marriage and divorce rates, total first marriage rate, divorces per 100 marriages.
     
  • Folders located elsewhere in the database: Demographic data is also available in other database folders, such as under 'Regional statistics'. 

More information

  Overview of all datasets on demography, population stock & balance datasets available in the database

Where does Eurostat data come from?

Eurostat collects demographic data at national and at regional level from the National Statistical Institutes (NSIs) of the EU Member States and also from almost all non-EU Member States in Europe, including EFTA countries, candidate countries and potential candidates. 

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Main annual data collections

There are four main annual data collections in the area of demography:

  1. The Demographic Balance data collection
    • By end of June of year n, this collection provides the first demographic data for the year n-1 and an estimate of the total population on 1 January of year n.
    • At the beginning of July, data are disseminated in the database table demo_gind together with  Eurostat and national metadata information.
  2. The total usually resident population 
  3. Forecast of the population of the current year 
    • Collected by the end of November of the current year.
    • In February of the following year, data on monthly births and deaths occurring within the (ongoing) year are  published in the database tables demo_fmonth and demo_mmonth.
  4. Detailed data for different breakdowns
    • By the end of each year n, this collection provides data for different breakdowns for the population, live births, deaths, marriages and divorces on a national as well as regional level for the year n-1.
    • In February (year n+1), the series are released in the Eurostat database, together with demographic indicators  calculated by Eurostat based on these data and with Eurostat and national metadata information. At the same time, information provided in demo_gind and in demo_r_gind3 are updated.

When is data released?

The table below shows you an overview of the timing of data releases for each reference year T

Time       Release

February - March

year T+1

Monthly data on total live births and deaths by months from January to June of year T.

July 

year T+1

Provisional first estimates of the main demographic developments: total population on 31 December of year T (published as population on 1 January of year T+1 by Eurostat), total live births and total deaths during year T.

October

year T+1

Total usually resident population on 31 December of year T (published as population on 1 January of year T+1 by Eurostat), used for qualified majority voting in the Council of the EU.

February - March

year T+2

Detailed annual data on total population, live births and deaths with various breakdowns and marriages and divorces together with data on international migration.

Data on all-causes weekly deaths are typically released with a few days delay, i.e. as soon as transmitted by the countries and validated by Eurostat. Excess mortality is published every month.

How is data quality ensured?

In line with the European statistics Code of Practice and the ESS quality assurance framework, Eurostat carries out controls and validation checks on raw data transmitted by the National Statistical Institutes to check if the 'totals' of a variable across different breakdowns are consistent. For example: the total population of a country obtained by summing up the breakdown by age should be equal to the total population of the same country obtained by summing up the breakdown by citizenship.  

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Consistencies between the different breakdowns available for one variable are verified by cross validation. This validation includes checks of the plausibility of the most updated annual value and of two consecutive annual values. In addition, mathematical verification using standard deviation and weighted average are applied. 

Eurostat also asks data providers to supply specific metadata describing the definitions used and the quality of the statistical outputs to assess uniform standards.

For more general information on, please visit our dedicated webpage on data validation

Based on the detailed collected data, Eurostat computes a series of demographic statistics and indicators. These demographic indicators, which are regularly calculated, are undergoing several validation checks of the most updated annual value and the available time series. This validation includes checks of the plausibility of the most updated annual value and on two consecutive annual values. In addition, mathematical verification using standard deviation and weighted average are applied.

What is the data revision policy?

Eurostat encourages National Statistical Institutes to keep demographic statistics up-to-date. In line with the national release calendars and availability of more recent information on data sources, countries may send updates of the data they previously provided throughout the entire year. Thus, updates of the data in Eurostat's database may occur outside of the major updates dates outlined above.

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A few situations may arise which result in displaying different figures for the population on 1 January in the different available tables  / datasets for a period of time. Possible underlying reasons are:

  • The timing of the transmission / re-transmission of data to Eurostat in case of revision of the population data for various breakdowns.
  • The successive annual demography data collections outlined above, as data on total population and the available breakdowns of population data by various characteristics are collected and updated at different times during the calendar year. 
  • The calendars of the National Statistical Institutes for producing and releasing population data broken down by characteristics, which are part of the voluntary data collection, and the timing of data transmission to Eurostat.

Which population dataset is most up-to-date?

To see and extract the most updated data on total population on 1 January please check the dataset  Demographic balance and crude rates (demo_gind)'.

This dataset includes the latest updates (or revised data) on the total population, births and deaths reported by the countries. Detailed breakdowns by various characteristics included other population datasets may be transmitted to Eurostat at a subsequent date.