Venue: Department of the Taoiseach
Date: April 21 2008, 11:00-14:00
Mr. Brendan Walsh chaired the meeting. The following members also attended: Ms. Mary Doyle, Mr. Con Lucey, Mr. Danny McCoy, Ms. Pat O’Hara, Mr. Paul Sweeney, Mr. Gerry O’Hanlon
CSO Assistant Director Generals Mr. Bill Keating and Ms. Siobhán Carey also attended. Mr. Gerry Brady acted as Secretary. Apologies were received from Mr. Michael McGrath.
The chairman welcomed Ms. Siobhán Carey, the new Assistant Director General for Social and Demographic Statistics, to her first NSB meeting.
These were agreed without amendment.
A Eurostat team visited CSO in April to conduct a control mission on the estimation of Gross National Income (GNI). The main objective of the mission was to discuss and clarify questions on the sources and methods used for the estimation of GNI as described in the GNI Inventory sent to Eurostat in December 2006.
Against a background of increasing pressure on the household survey programme to meet new demands for data, the CSO is looking at the overall design of the household surveys. The current programme of separate survey vehicles could be made more flexible through an integrated design. This would improve coherence between the different surveys and help in increasing capacity to meet new demands for new topics and to support greater disaggregation. This review will also look at ways of releasing field capacity through use of different modes of data collection (e.g. computer assisted telephone interviewing).
A revised version of the Memorandum for the Government on Census 2011 has been submitted to the Department of the Taoiseach. The Memorandum seeks Government agreement to hold a census in 2011.
The CSO hosted the first seminar dedicated to Business Statistics in late February. In addition to presenting a number of papers, the CSO took the opportunity to officially launch the Airport-Pairings database and the Family Business report.
The CSO has published two IT-related tenders on the e-tenders website. The first relates to the migration of CSO data analysis to the upgraded SAS Business Intelligence product. This migration (involving up to 300 users of data analysis software) will be implemented over the course of 2008/2009. The second tender relates to the implementation of a new data collection system, using Personal Digital Assistants, for the Consumer Price Index.
Since the beginning of this year the CSO and Sustainable Energy Ireland (SEI) have been meeting to discuss the individual and collaborative roles of SEI and CSO in the collection, processing and dissemination of Energy Statistics in the future. This issue is particularly relevant given the imminent implementation of the Energy Statistics Regulation. The objective of the proposed regulation on energy statistics is to establish a common framework for the collection and compilation of Community statistics on energy production, imports and exports, transformation and consumption. Some of the underlying principles include:
The statistical network will operate within the framework of the European Statistics Code of Practice; andEliminate duplication of effort on all aspects of the process from data collection to data dissemination.
It was agreed that the review of the 2003-2008 NSB strategy would be incorporated into the 2009-2014 Strategy rather than issued as a separate report. The review will provide context for the new strategy. The next meeting will discuss issues arising from the last strategy that may need to be carried forward into the new strategy.
The System of Health Accounts (SHA) is an extension of the core National Accounts and consists of a family of interrelated tables for reporting final expenditure on health and its financing. The SHA contains common concepts, definitions, classifications and accounting rules to enable comparability over time and across countries. It provides a basis for uniform reporting by countries with a wide range of different models of organising their national health systems. The set of core tables in the SHA addresses three basic questions:
Where does the money to finance the health system come from (source of funding);
Who does the money go to (provider of health care services and goods);
What kinds of services are performed and what types of goods are purchased.
The Standing Committee on Health Statistics established a Steering Group to oversee a project to progress the implementation of SHA in Ireland. The Health Research Board issued a tender on behalf of the key stakeholders involved in the Steering Group, i.e. Department of Health and Children, CSO, HSE and the HIQA, for a suitable expert to lead and direct a small dedicated project team with a view to compiling an initial set of Health Accounts.
The next meeting will be in CSO Cork in late June or early July
 Professor emeritus Economics Department, UCD.
 See chapter 2 of SHA Manual 1.0 for a list of the standard tables, www.oecd.org/health/sha
 To view a copy of the Invitation to Tender for the project to implement the OECD System of Health Accounts in Ireland see the HRB website at http://www.hrb.ie/display_content.php?page_id=85