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November 27, 2013

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Officials get training on use of PDA for census

Shanghai started training officials with digital devices that will be used for the third national economic census.

“To make it more efficient, the census data collection and analysis process will be paperless,” said Yan Jun, spokesman for the Shanghai Statistics Bureau.

“We can better guarantee the accuracy and security of the data as they will all become digitized,” Yan said.

With 8,000 palm digital assistant (PDA) devices, more than 24,000 local officials will conduct the census and collect data. Yesterday, they learnt to use the PDA devices and record data in a designated data processing platform.

The third national economic census will be carried out from January 1 next year that will throw more light on the country’s economic strength.

Such census are conducted every five years but it is the first time it is being conducted with PDA.

The officials are first supposed to take pictures of a company’s location with the PDA, and record key information such as the corporate revenue and profit. They will then take a picture again of the business certificates of the company.

Jiang Wen, a Changning District official, said the new method can help guarantee the accuracy of data collection.

“It is now impossible for investigators to forge data, because we can check physical existence of the company through the pictures,” Jiang said.

“Also, it is easier for us to spot any unintentional mistakes, as the device will tick off inconsistencies during the data collection process.”

To ensure data security, all the PDA devices are coded.



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