Research and data

Scottish Borders Census Information

About the Census

The Scottish Population Census is a key source of demographic data which produces useful outputs at various geographic levels. It is conducted once every 10 years and the data take around another two years before they are released to the public. The most recent Census was in 2011. 

The smallest building block for Census based profiles is the Census Output Area. These are areas of at least 50 people that are used for collecting and analysing the Census.

Area Profiles of any size or shape can be built up from Census Output Areas. These are useful for very small communities such as Community Councils. Sometimes, the Census is the only source of information about population change in communities as small as Community Council Areas.

All Area Profiles use Census data, sometimes combined with data from other official statistics providers, as the means for obtaining accurate population and household estimates about communities.

Other neighbourhood-level geographic boundaries that use Census data include:

What is in the Census? 

Population Information

  • Population by gender, single-year of age or age band
  • Number of Households
  • Marital Status
  • Living Arrangements and household composition
  • Address one year ago


  • Ethnicity
  • National Identity
  • Religion
  • Country of Birth
  • Length of Residence in the UK
  • Language


  • Self-assessed general health
  • Provision of unpaid care - hours per week
  • Demographics of carers
  • Degree of  limitation due to long-term health condition or disability
  • Nature of health condition or disability


  • Household size
  • Tenure
  • Car or van availability
  • Accommodation type
  • Type of Central Heating


  • Highest level of qualification
  • 16-17 year olds in education
  • Households with low qualifications

Labour Market

  • Economic activity and inactivity
  • Occupation by category
  • Occupation by industry
  • NS-SeC Socio-Economic Status of Household Reference Person ("Head of household")
  • Unemployment
  • Average hours worked - males and females
  • Method of travel to work and school

Origin Destination Data

A separate publication of Origin-Destination Statistics (also known as Flow Data), showing migration movements of people who were living at a different address one year ago, is released as a separate product at Scotland level and published on NOMIS.

Census-based Area Profiles

If you would like an area profile based on 2011 Census Data, combined with other sources of demographic data, for your Community Council, Ward or other local area, contact our Research and Information Team using the contact details below.

If Census information is insufficiently up-to-date for your needs, contact our Research and Information Team. There may be Data Zone-level figures from other Official Statistics providers.