Thursday, May 9, 2019

Provincial Electoral District Census Profiles

I am assisting an economics student on a research question based around census profiles (that include ethnic origin and place of birth questions) around provincial electoral district boundaries. This is easily do-able for federal electoral districts –but I haven’t found a consistent methodology for provincial electoral boundaries. Some provinces have posted profiles on their own portals –not sure how consistent the methods are. Perhaps there’s a collocation of that I’m unaware of.


I have reached out to explore the researchers openness to a geospatial approach since most of the boundary files seem to be available.

We’ve had the following information passed on:

“As long as all of the PEDs are available online via open data, we could create a national or provincial files. We don’t currently have PED boundaries other than Ontario (which we have created and have permission to use for other organizations).

I checked with one of our geographers, and she provided the following additional information:

If the files are retrieved via open data portals I don’t think we would need permission to use them.  It doesn’t seem that there is a standard methodology, other than provinces aiming to have representation by population. From the quick look I took at the BC PEDs, the boundaries do not follow any SGCs. Provinces also amend and update boundaries at different times. For example, BC updated their PEDS in 2015, Manitoba in 2018.   I would need to consult with the client to find out if they wanted the most recently updated boundaries, or the boundaries used in the last provincial elections.

All that to say is yes, we can create them.  This would be a cost-recovery activity so there would be a charge for the work.”