What can we learn about South African households by comparing the national Census 2011 with the Agincourt Health and Demographic Surveillance System data in rural northeast Mpumalanga?

Mercy Shoko, Mark A. Collinson, Lesego Lefakane, Kathleen Kahn, Stephen M. Tollman


Households are central to demographic processes; fertility, mortality and migration. In South Africa, households are important socio-economic units that are at the core of service-delivery planning. While the concept of a household in the country is not in dispute across surveys – it is a socio-economic unit based on shared resources and co-residency - household definitions vary by enumeration methodology. Researchers have, however, not taken full advantage of the availability of the multiple data sources for measuring demographic phenomena. Among the sources of household data in the country are health and demographic surveillance systems and the national census, which are used together in this study to examine the population and household dynamics in a rural sub-district of South Africa. Key findings are that there are obvious differences in the population and household estimates between the two data sources, largely explained by the variations in household definition and data collection procedures. 


South Africa; Agincourt; household; census; migration

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11564/30-2-850


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