Sri Lanka: Census asks question about Internet and ICT use

Posted on January 5, 2012  /  5 Comments

We have yet to see the actual questions, but this is very satisfying news. If the questions are good, it justifies our continued engagement with National Statistical Organizations since 2006. If we are still working on indicators, we’ll do our best to spread the word on Sri Lankan good practice.

Sri Lanka will collect information about areas like internet access in the first nation-wide household and population census to be conducted in over 30 years, an official said.

The census which is to conducted from February 27 to March 21 will have 80,000 ‘enumerators’ visiting every house in the country to count the population and also questions about amenities in the house.

The head of Sri Lanka’s statistics office Suranjana Vidyaratne asked people to give correct information.

“We are not giving this personal information to anyone,” she said. “This time we are also asking questions like internet access.”


  1. I’d like to see figures for how many people haven’t even heard of the Internet. I am sure there are some out there. I imagine the govt. will milk this census for all the propaganda value it can get. Oh look at how many people have mobiles and how many have TV sets and what not. That must mean that living standards are rising. Doesn’t matter that we have no numbers to compare with.

    1. Most of your questions are answered in the slideset at Slide 27 shows that among the poor in Sri Lanka only 2 percent have not heard of the Internet. If that is the number for the poor, one can assume that for the population as a whole the number is around 1-2 %.

      You can see the results from a country-representative sample at Or you can go to the Census and Statistics site and read the report.

      1. I remember when I lived in SL there was a program on Rupavahini about the web. Antharjaliya or something like that. So yeah I can imagine almost every knows about it by now.

        BTW those survey results do assume honesty and that doesn’t always apply to Pakistanis. People here will never admit that there is something that they don’t know. No way do 98% of a largely illiterate Pakistani population know about the interwebz :p

  2. It is not through the benevolence from the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that people expect our dinner, but using their regard to their own interest.
    The key of economic is to have some understanding that nobody knows.