Back to Top

 Skip navigation


In 2016 CSO published for the first time its Irish Annual Statistical Work Programme covering statistical outputs and distinguishing European statistics. An annual report on the work programme is published in Quarter 1 of each year and is available here. Both of these initiatives improved compliance with the European Code of Practice, indicators 1.5 and 11.2. The CSO expanded the detail in the Statistical Work Programme for 2017 to include other statistical activities such as major revisions or methodological changes planned in the year and to outline the modernisation and transformation programme currently being undertaken. In 2018 the detail in the programme was further expanded by the inclusion of the name of each Product.

The creation of the CSO’s Annual Work Programme 2018 was informed by the following;

1.  Legal Mandate of the Central Statistics Office

A.      National Legislation

The Statistics Act, 1993 provides the legislative basis for the collection, compilation, extraction and dissemination for statistical purposes of information relating to economic, social and general activities and conditions in the State. 

The Act protects the confidentiality of the information provided to the CSO, which may only be used for statistical purposes; and confidential data may not be disseminated or otherwise communicated to third parties including Government Departments or bodies.

The independent position of the CSO, as defined in the Statistics Act, 1993, reflects international best practice for the organisation of official statistics.

B.      European Union legislation

Regulation (EC) No 223/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 2009 which was amended in 2015 by  Regulation 2015/759, (see the consolidated text of amended Regulation 223/2009)establishes a legal framework for the development, production and dissemination of European statistics.

The Office provides high quality impartial and relevant statistical information to meet the needs of policy makers at national, regional and local level, decision makers in the business community, EU institutions, international organisations, media, researchers, and the public generally.

There is a significant international dimension to the CSO's work through the provision of statistics that may be compared directly with corresponding data for other countries. This is particularly the case in respect of our participation in the European Statistical System (ESS).

Meeting EU requirements has been the single most important factor shaping the development of the CSO's work since the 1970s. Since accession to the European Community in 1973 the CSO's work programme has been almost been completely driven by the mandatory requirements of EU Directives and Regulations.

All of the CSO’s statistics are published online on the CSO website ( or on the Eurostat website ( The annual statistical work programme is a comprehensive list of the CSO’s statistical products and distinguishes European statistics. While European statistics are determined by the European statistical programme, they also facilitate the CSO in meeting National demands and requirements.

C.      The National Statistics Board

The National Statistics Board was initially set up on a non-statutory basis in 1986. It was established on a statutory basis when the Statistics Act, 1993 came into operation in November 1994. Its function, set out in the Act, is to guide the strategic direction of the CSO and, in particular to: establish priorities for the compilation and development of official statistics; assess the resources of staff, equipment and finance which should be made available for the compilation of official statistics; and arbitrate, subject to the final decision of the Taoiseach, on any conflicts that may arise with other public authorities relating to the extraction of statistics from records or to the co-ordination of statistical activities

2. CSO Values

The CSO subscribes fully to the UN Fundamental Principles of Official Statistics and the European Statistics Code of Practice. Throughout our work, we abide by the following core values

  • Independence, objectivity and integrity are core values
  • We ensure absolute adherence to the legal guarantee of confidentiality and all activities comply with statistical and data protection legislation
  • We drive innovation throughout all our business and organisational processes
  • We are professional, reliable and trusted
  • We have respect for our data providers and are committed to finding new ways to reduce the demands placed on them
  • We constantly strive to provide excellent service to our customers
  • We value our staff and strive to provide an environment in which staff meet their full potential and flourish at work

3. CSO’s Strategic Aims

The Statement of Strategy 2017-2019 outlines the CSO’s ambitions and sets out the strategic direction over the next three years. The strategy is designed to fully exploit the potential of the data and technological revolution in order to deliver a broader range of high quality information on societal and economic change and in so doing to support the process of guiding Ireland’s future development.

SOS 2016-2019 Image

4. The Eurostat Peer Review Action Plan 2015

The European Statistics Code of Practice describes 15 Principles covering the institutional environment, the statistical production processes and the output of statistics. The Principles of the Code of Practice together with the general quality management principles represent a common quality framework in the European Statistical System.

The implementation of the European Statistical Code of Practice follows a voluntary self-regulatory approach. The main tool for assessing progress in its implementation is the European Statistical System peer reviews.  The Peer Review of the Irish Statistical System, including primarily the CSO together with Other National Authorities producing European Statistics, was conducted in March 2015 and resulted in an agreed action plan to improve compliance with the code.

Action 2 of the Peer Review Action Plan agreed with Eurostat in 2015 states that the CSO should regularly compile and publish the Irish annual statistical work programme covering statistical surveys and other statistical activities of European statistics. The progress reports should also be published accordingly. (European statistics Code of Practice, indicators 1.5 and 11.2.)

5. The Transformation Programme

In order to meet the increasing demands of customers and the need to enhance the quality of statistical output and enable staff to focus on more value added activity, the CSO is undertaking significant organisational and process change. The main drivers of this modernisation and transformation programme are internal and external strategies set out in CSO 2020, the EU Peer Review report and CSO Action Plan, the CSO Statement of Strategy 2017-2019 and the National Statistics Board strategy 2015-2020.

As part of its drive to transform, the CSO has prioritised key transformational initiatives and identified a future CSO Business Operating Model based on the Generic Statistical Business Process Model (GSBPM) and the Generic Activity Model for Statistical Organisations (GAMSO). The CSO prioritises the actions required in order to deliver the transformation programme and the strategic goals on an annual basis.


The CSO will deliver the strategic aims as set out in the Statement of Strategy 2017-2019 by delivering our statistical work programme, our general work programme and our transformation work programme. We will report on the general and the transformation work programmes as part of the annual progress report on the Statement of Strategy. We will report on progress on the statistical work programme in the annual report on the statistical work programme. The CSO remains committed to the research and development of new products and alternative compilation methods for existing statistics.

The full description of products for 2018 is detailed within the Annual Statistical Work Programme list of Products available at the link below and includes planned revisions and methodological changes.


>>> Go to List of Products for 2018


For further information contact:

Noel O’ Hara
Transformation & Performance CSO
Phone: 021 4535495

  • Introduction
  • List of all Statistical Products 2018 (XLS 57KB)
  • List of Statistical Products by Theme 2018