The paper notes that new and large data sources, especially digital data extracted from the Internet, are cheap, fast, often internationally-focused and can be specifically directed towards the needs of clients. Users can therefore be expected to begin asking legitimate questions, the authors warn, about whether and why they should rely on official statistics when these competing sources are faster. There may well be a trade-off between accuracy and timeliness, but both are aspects of quality so we cannot say that more accurate but less rapidly-produced official statistics are necessarily better quality than faster, less accurate statistics from competing sources. In the face of this competition, will official statistics become redundant?
What can -- or should -- NSOs do about such competition?
To respond to this question please enter your comment in the box at the bottom of the page.