Issue, No.13 (March 2020)

Peru: National Household Survey “25 Years”

by Nancy Hidalgo Calle (National Institute of Statistics and Information Technology, Peru)

The National Household Survey (ENAHO), executed by the National Institute of Statistics and Informatics (INEI) is a statistical research that, since 1995, has been monitoring the indicators that allow to know the evolution of poverty, well-being and living conditions of households in Peru. As of 2003, ENAHO runs continuously throughout the year.

ENAHO is the main source of information for producing official statistics of national interest, such as indicators of monetary poverty, unsatisfied basic needs (NBI), employment levels, education, as input for the elaboration of poverty maps, among others.

The design of the questionnaire is obtained as a result of consensus with users, a practice that is strongly institutionalized. The questionnaire addresses issues such as citizen participation, access to social programs, governance, corruption, democracy, informality, financial inclusion, education, health, employment and income, among others; which make it a valuable source of information for public policy makers, the academic community and in the elaboration of cross-sectional and longitudinal studies through the panel component of the housing sample.

Committed to transparency, trust and credibility in the technical quality of the information provided by ENAHO, continuous improvement processes are carried out to guarantee data quality, from the collection in the field to the validation of methodologies for the production of final statistics.

In this context, in 2007, under the auspices of the World Bank (WB), INEI convened a Specialized Advisory Committee, integrated by representatives of international organizations, national government agencies, representatives of the academic community and research centers. This Committee participates every year in monitoring, verifying and guaranteeing the quality of the survey in the measurement of poverty and other indicators; subsequently, through Supreme Resolution No. 097-2010-PCM, the Poverty Advisory Committee is constituted as an Advisory Commission for Poverty Estimation and other related indicators in the country.

In 2010, ENAHO was distinguished by the World Bank with the Regional Prize for Statistical Innovation in Latin America and the Caribbean. In the contest participated 177 programs from 26 countries in the categories of censuses, surveys and administrative records.

According to the great transformation processes that societies live and that justify demographic, economic and behavioral changes in a population, there is a need to have a more consistent methodology and in accordance with the reality of the country. In this context, ENAHO and the Poverty Advisory Commission worked on updating the methodology for the measurement of monetary poverty; task that consisted mainly in the readjustment of the urban /rural population structure according to the 2007 National Censuses, the identification of new consumption patterns and the evaluation of the components of expenditure, changes in caloric needs and the inclusion of new sources of information such as the National Family Budget Survey 2008-2009; changing significantly the parameters that define poverty indicators. This work was completed in March 2012 and is a current methodology.

For the collection of information in the field, ENAHO makes use of digital technology since 2010, replacing physical questionnaires with the use of the PDA; later in 2016 the integral transition of this technology to the TABLET devices was done. The migration of all data processing and data collection programs to new technologies allowed us to obtain operational advantages in the field and opened the doors for housing georeferencing, real-time fieldwork monitoring, and online delivery (using a data plan) of the information collected at the conclusion of each interview.

The monitoring of the ENAHO field operation is a fundamental process for quality assurance, and it is done with the support of the Management System for Monitoring Data Collection, a system that aims to: 1) Follow up and control the different activities of the survey, providing timely information to ensure coverage and take preventive and corrective actions, 2) Improve the quality of the information collected in the field by monitoring quality indicators and assessing monetary variables, 3) Become an instrument of consultation for the personnel in charge of the analysis of the information that facilitates the detection of biases and/or inconsistencies in the information collected from the field in a timely manner.

The National Household Survey has a long history in the generation of official statistics on the households living conditions in Peru, applying throughout its 25 years of execution, improvements and innovations to ensure the quality of information which is available to general public at ( We are happy that various surveys from the National Household Survey are also available through the harmonized Luxembourg Income Study (LIS) Database and thus can easily be analyzed in cross-national perspective. In 2009, as part of the MECOVI program, LIS included the first dataset from Peru (2004). In 2015 and 2019 four more datasets were added.

On the 25th ENAHO`s anniversary, INEI-Peru expresses its recognition to all the people behind each process, who with their effort and professionalism make possible the execution of this survey, as well as to the users whose information demands always motivates the processes of continuous improvement. INEI makes also a special recognition to all Peruvian households that open their doors and provide their information.