The demand for quality statistics is increasing as Jamaica, like the rest of the world, moves towards more evidenced-based decision-making. Global development frameworks such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (SDGs) have also ushered in renewed and urgent attention on the need for better data and statistics to monitor progress and inform policy and decision-making.
Jamaica has had a long history of producing national statistics with the first record of statistical activity dating back to the population census of 1844. However, the provision of official statistics to the government and people of Jamaica on a regular basis began in 1946. The need for statistical information to assist policy makers, following the implementation of adult suffrage, led to the passing of the Statistics Act in 1946. This gave birth to Jamaica’s first National Statistics Office (NSO), the Central Bureau of Statistics, which was tasked to process and analyse the 1943 Population Census and determine the size of the population in preparation for the implementation of adult suffrage and the election of 1944. In the ensuing years, the range of statistics produced in Jamaica has expanded, covering other social, economic and environmental aspects of the country.NSS assessment