Passing on the post

"The Census is a priority", says the new IBGE president at inauguration

Section: IBGE, 2020 Census | Pedro Renaux

February 25, 2019 03h31 PM | Last Updated: February 26, 2019 04h20 PM

The Minister of the Economy, Paulo Guedes, was present at the inauguration of Susana Cordeiro Guerra - Photo: Licia Rubinstein/IBGE News Agency 

The new IBGE president, Susana Cordeiro Guerra, took over on Friday (22), in a ceremony held in one of the Institute's buildings, in the north of Rio de Janeiro (RJ). In her first official speech, she reinforced the commitement to the 2020 Population Census and revealed to be aware of the reduction in the number of the civil servants in the institution.

“In eight years, the IBGE has lost more than 30% of its staff and there is the risk of losing another 30% this year considering those who are eligible for retirement”, said Susana, who stressed that in less than a year from now, the Census, the biggest challenge of the Institute, is about to begin. “[The Census] is a Herculean task, covering 213 million people in 71 million urban and rural housing units, through the hiring of more than 240 thousand temporary workers”.

Nevertheless, Susana guarantees that the challenge will be met, and that she has the support of the Ministry of the Economy: “following the best practices of quality and responsibility, which are a tradition in the IBGE, our priority will be the Census”, says Susana.

The Minister of the Economy, Paulo Guedes, participated in the ceremony and took the opportunity to comment on the excellent reputation of the IBGE throughout the 82 years of services dedicated to the country. “The IBGE has always been a background panel of our lives as Brazilians, either in the bad times of inflation, with the indices here produced, or in the good times of public policies, grounded on the rich data offered by the institute”.

Guedes also said that he has been following Susana's career for long. “She has an excellent education, technical skills, experience in the whole world, having been part of a big international organization, which also pursues excellence”.

The new president guaranteed she will face IBGE's challenges - Photo: Licia Rubinstein/Agência IBGE Notícias 

The president claimed that the IBGE is the heart of data production and of information that feeds into most of the political decisions. She declared that her administration will focus on merging preservation and innovation: “we will boost the excellent job already done by the institution, so we can go on performing successfully our statistical and geoscientific duties”.

Among Susana's proposals are the revision of some activities and the study of strategies for leveraging new resources for the institution. According to her, new paths will be tried in order to make the IBGE more modern and more international.

President recognizes Institute's complexity

In the last few weeks, the president had meetings with the board of IBGE directors and coordinators, as well as with its former presidents, to have a grasp of the institute's complexity. “The highlight in all those meetings was the IBGE servant's spirit, it is contageous. They are workers who invest their very best to fulfill the challenging and honrable mission of this institution”, claimed Susana.

The now former president of the IBGE, Roberto Olinto Ramos, said that the institute has been modernizing itself for years, and is already in line with the new government's directives. “The Census is already fully digitized, (it has been since 2010), and so are the surveys. We are undergoing a transitional period, we need to re-think the IBGE, and that is a good challenge”, said Olinto, who stays in the institute in a position yet to be defined.