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European Statistics Code of Practice (2017 edition)

The European Statistics Code of Practice is the cornerstone of the common quality framework of the European Statistical System.

It is a self-regulatory instrument and is based on sixteen principles which cover the institutional environment, the statistical processes and the output of statistics. A set of indicators of good practices and standards for each of the principles provides guidance and reference when reviewing the application of the Code of Practice and increases the transparency of the European Statistical System.

Its objective is to ensure that the statistics produced by the European Statistical System are not only relevant, appropriate and necessary but also comply with the principles of professional independence, impartiality and objectivity.

The European Statistics Code of Practice was adopted by the Statistical Program Committee in February 2005 and promulgated in Commission Recommendation COM (2005) 217 on the independence, integrity and accountability of the national and Community statistical authorities. The European Statistical System Committee later reviewed the Code of Practice in late September 2011 and approved a third version in November 2017.

The purpose of the current version (2017) is to reflect the latest changes and innovations in the development, production and dissemination of the official statistics of the European Statistical System and beyond, including new emerging data sources, the use of new technologies, the modernisation of the legal framework and the results of the peer reviews of the application of the Code of Practice.

The Catalan statistical legislation reflected this Code in the Law on the 2011–2014 Statistical Plan for Catalonia, which included an express undertaking to optimize the cost effectiveness of statistical activity, the appropriateness of the resources and accessibility and clarity in the statistical dissemination. The Code was fully adopted in the 2017–2020 Statistical Plan for Catalonia.