The Agricultural Census (AC) is carried out every ten years in Italy. Six agricultural censuses have been conducted, in the years 1961, 1970, 1982, 1990, 2000 and the latest in 2010.
Six agricultural censuses have been conducted in Italy in the years 1961, 1970, 1982, 1990, 2000 and the latest, to which data here refer, in 2010.
Its objective is:
a) to provide a statistical picture on the structure of the agricultural and livestock system at national, regional and local level.
b) to fulfil the Regulation (EC) n. 1166/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 November 2008 on farm structure (FSS) and the survey on agricultural production methods (SAPM) and the Council Regulation (EEC) No 357/79 of 5 February 1979 on statistical surveys of areas under vines.
c) To update and validate the statistical register of the agricultural holdings built up by Istat through the integration of the administrative sources.
The Agricultural Census cover all agricultural holdings whoever is its management, with Utilized Agricultural Area (UAA) or livestock equal or higher than minimum thresholds stated by Istat.
Kind of Data
Census/enumeration data [cen]
Unit of Analysis
The census scope covered agricultural activities (crop and animal production).
Agriculture & Rural Development
Land (policy, resource management)
The statistical unit is the agricultural holding, defined as a single unit, both technically and economically, which has a single management and which undertakes the agricultural activities listed in Annex I to the European Parliament and Council Regulation (EC) No. 1166/2008 within the economic territory of the EU, as either its primary or secondary activity. Specific actions have been implemented to include all common lands with UAA2 in the AC 2010.
Producers and sponsors
Ministry of Agriculture
The pre-census list of agricultural holdings was established based on the integration of administrative and statistical sources that contain information concerning the target population. The AC was conducted using complete enumeration.
Dates of Data Collection
Data Collection Mode
Data Collection Notes
Data collection has been carried out through two alternative techniques: (i) traditional, face-to-face interviewing (PAPI) method; or (ii) the new, self-interviewing (CAWI) method.
There was one comprehensive census questionnaire, available either in print form or as and Internet-based electronic version that could be completed online. It was available in four languages (Italian, German, English and Slovenian). The questionnaire was used to collect both farm structure characteristics as well as items related to agricultural production methods. The questionnaire included all 16 core items recommended in the WCA 2010.
- General company news
- Information for companies with land
- Information for farms with livestock
- Location of land and farms
- Work and related activities (agricultural year 2009 - 2010)
- Other information (agricultural year 2009 - 2010)
1. DATA PROCESSING AND ARCHIVING
Manual data entry was used (for paper questionnaires) along with direct data capture (when CAWI was used). Non-sampling errors were identified and treated by an Editing and Imputation System. For detecting outlier values, a special procedure based on the robust technique of Forward Search was implemented, in partnership with the University of Parma and centrally applied by ISTAT. The imputation process used was a combination of the following methodologies: (i) deductive imputation, if the values to impute are uniquely determined by the values assumed by other variables; (ii) rule-based imputation (based on deterministic "if then" rules); (iii) nearest neighbour imputation; (iv) model-based imputation (preferred for the imputation of continuous variables); and (v) interactive imputation. Administrative sources were used for the preparation of the pre-census list, for data control and correction.
2. CENSUS DATA QUALITY
To evaluate the quality of the AC 2010, Istat implemented two PESs ("post-census surveys"): a Coverage Survey (CS) and a Re-Interview Survey (RIS). The CS was designed to obtain reliable estimates of under- or overcount, using another independent list of units existing in a sample of cadastral maps. The RS was carried out through a re-interview of a sample of agricultural holdings already interviewed in the AC to estimate response error due to respondents and/or enumerators. The survey was carried out from May 2011 to January 2012 on a sample of approximately 50 000 holdings, selected with one-stage stratified sample from the census frame. The survey was conducted using CATI.
Estimates of Sampling Error
The non-sampling errors has been identified and treated by an Editing and Imputation System (E&IS), preserving as much as possible the collected information. The E&I activities could be grouped in three main stages. The first stage refers to the checks performed at the data gathering phase. The second stage concerns the activities carried out in order to provide the provisional figures. The last stage relates to the procedures aiming to release the final data.
Preliminary results were disseminated in July 2011 through a press release and 23 tables were made available to users on the Istat website. The final results were released in July 2012. The main dissemination method was the Internet.
Italian National Institute of Statistics (Istat)
Department of Censuses,
Administrative and Statistical Registers
Address: Via Cesare Balbo 16, 00184, Rome, Italy
Telephone: (+39) 06 46731
Disclaimer and copyrights
The user of the data acknowledges that the original collector of the data, the authorized distributor of the data, and the relevant funding agency bear no responsibility for use of the data or for interpretations or inferences based upon such uses