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The National Statistics Bureau in collaboration with the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD) has developed “Guideline for Assessing Quality of Administrative Data for Producing Official Statistics” in Bhutan. The aim of developing it is to improve the quality of administrative data for producing official statistics by the Bhutan Statistical System.

The Administrative data provides valuable information on the Bhutanese society and can replace  surveys (Which are expensive in terms of human and financial resources) as well as provide additional information on areas where surveys are not being conducted. It is important to know that administrative data is collected for administrative purposes of the public sector, not necessarily to produce official statistics. However, administrative data can be used as a source for producing official statistics and should be made use of as much as possible. But we need to consider the quality of the administrative data and how well the data fits the purpose we want to use it for.

The guideline is supplemented by a mapping tool and a questionnaire. The mapping tool can be used to identify available data sources, information about the data holder, which variables the data source contains, the target population, process of data collection, data validation procedures, which statistics it can produce etc.

A questionnaire to assess the quality of administrative data being used to produce official statistics consists of four broad categories like Institutional arrangements, Quality of input data, Quality of data processing and analysis and Quality of statistical output. The results of the questionnaire will help both producers and users of the statistics to better understand its quality and whether it is fit for purpose.