Release guidelines

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF) is a system of statistics comprising the central and high-quality part of Finnish social statistics. The Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland maintains a list of the statistics accepted into Official Statistics of Finland.

Summary

 

1. Publishing modes and notations

Statistics belonging to Official Statistics of Finland can be published on the web (as html pages, databases, PDF files), as printed products or on CD-ROM/DVD discs. The primary mode is publishing on the web linked to the OSF portal.

The ISSN codes for statistics published in the Official Statistics of Finland series are:

  • 1796-0479 (web publication / PDF),
  • 1795-5165 (printed product),
  • 1796-7082 (CD-ROM).

The main series is not numbered.

Publications from individual statistics containing basic data of Official Statistics of Finland belong to the OSF publication series without a separate decision. In addition, other publications, mainly various compilation publications, can be published in the OSF publication series. This requires a separate decision by the Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland. The publications in the publication series are typically released repetitively at regular intervals. Contemplative material of research report type or volumes containing in-depth analysis are not published in the OSF series.

Publications appearing in the OSF publication series may simultaneously belong to some other publication series, such as a specific series of the producer of the statistics, which has its own ISSN code.

The statistics and publications in the Official Statistics of Finland series are grouped under 26 topics.

1.1. Publishing on the web

Each set of statistics belonging to Official Statistics of Finland must have a home page on the website of its producer.

Basic data from all Official Statistics are gathered into the OSF portal maintained by Statistics Finland. The summary page of each set of statistics of Statistics Finland in the OSF portal is also its homepage. The home pages of the statistics of other producers are located on the producers' websites. The summary page contains a direct link to the home page.

The home page is in Finnish and Swedish and optionally also in English. The statistics belonging to the European Statistical System always have an English-language home page.

Official Statistics of Finland are identified on their home page by the OSF stamp (see page 7) shown in connection with the name of the statistics. The stamp may contain a link to the front page of the OSF portal (www.officialstatistics.fi).

The user must find the following on the home page of each set of statistics:

  • Name of the statistics,
  • Description of the statistics,
  • Quality description of the statistics, whose different versions are archived,
  • Latest data content of the statistics (a brief news item, or similar - equalling the summary of central results of the statistics which is required of printed publications) and older, archived versions of the document concerned,
  • Release calendar,
  • Name of the person who can provide further information and/or a form for contacting persons responsible for the statistics,
  • Information on errors in the statistics (change data are retained permanently),
  • Optionally also other metadata.

As the OSF guidelines and monitoring are developed further, other compulsory contents may be added to the home pages in future. To improve the functionality of the OSF portal, efforts are made to build home pages of uniform structure in the systems of different producers.

To make data searching easier, key words are defined for each set of statistics in the OSF portal. Secondary topics may also be defined for a set of statistics. Additionally, it must be stated whether the set of statistics belongs to the European Statistical System.

1.2. Printed and CD-ROM products

The main contents of a basic publication of statistics released as a printed product or CD-ROM equal the contents of the home page of the statistics concerned. To a certain extent the printed contents can be substituted with references to web pages. For example, in brief, frequently released publications of data on economic trends the quality description and the description of the statistics can be left unprinted and a link provided to the documents published on the web.

The URL address of the description and the quality description of the statistics concerned must always be given in a printed publication. If the quality description is included in a printed publication it should be appended to the end of the publication. However, it is advisable to mention the quality description in the foreword or introduction to the publication.

A printed publication containing the basic data from a set of statistics must always include a summary of the key results of the statistics. This rule may be departed from in compilation publications if the statistics have been released earlier elsewhere. In such cases, a reference to the data concerned must be included in the source references.

1.2.1. Series and other notations in printed publications

The following only applies to notations in publications in the OSF series. In addition to them, publications may also have other identifier notations as deemed necessary by the producer.

Front and back cover

The front cover of a publication must contain the publisher's logo.

The identifier (logo) of Official Statistics of Finland is placed on publication covers in the place where the publisher normally gives the series code.

It is recommended that the image file described in these guidelines (page 7) is used for the identifier. If use of the image file does not suit the graphic design of publications, the manner in which the OSF identifier is to be shown in them can be separately agreed with the Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland.

The logo is in three languages regardless of the languages used in the publication.

The topic is indicated in connection with the logo of Official Statistics of Finland. It is always at least in Finnish and Swedish. If the publication is in English, the topic must also be in English. The year of publication is given in connection with the topic in Finnish. The font, font size and the like are not specified.

Example 1.

Publisher's logo OFS-logo Aihealue 200x
Ämnesområde
Topic
Teollisuus 2005
Industri
Industry

The front cover must show the following:

  • The name or the main title of the publication in the language of the publication
  • Parallel titles of the publication, that is, the title of the publication in other languages when the publication is in more than one language
  • Any possible sub-title or other title explaining the main title; the sub-title can also be placed on the title page if there is no room for it on the front cover or the layout of the cover requires it
  • The statistical reference period(s) in connection with the title of the publication.

Example 2.


Kesämökit 2004
Sommarstugor 2004

Väestön muutokset 2004 1. neljännes
Befolkningsförändringar 2004 1:a kvartalet

Kuluttajahintaindeksi 2004, Kesäkuu
Konsumentprisindex 2004, Juni
Consumer Price Index 2004, June

Title leaf

The title leaf consists of the title page and its verso. The verso of the title page is also known as the copyright page. All publications do not necessarily have a title leaf.

The title page contains the key identifier information of the publication, its name, logo of Official Statistics of Finland, topic, etc. The title page repeats the information on the front cover, but gives it more fully.

In addition to other information the copyright page gives:

  • Name of a person who can give further information, address for feedback (this can also or alternatively be given on the back cover),
  • ISSN and ISBN codes, ISSN of Official Statistics of Finland only in Finnish,
  • URL addresses for descriptions of the statistics referred to in the publication, and
  • URL addresses for quality descriptions of the statistics referred to in the publication.

1.3. Compilation publications and compilation publication series

Wherever possible, the principles presented in these guidelines are adhered to in compilation publications with the following further specifications.

Publications which contain data from several sets of statistics or/and describe several topics, and are unambiguously identifiable, and archived, are defined as compilation publications. Examples of these are the statistical yearbooks which different producers publish. An OSF compilation publication series refers to an entity formed by repeatedly issued compilation publications. For example, the yearbooks issued in different years form such a series.

An OSF compilation publication (web, disc or printed) mainly contains tables and graphics. Its texts are quite brief and summary by nature.

If all the tables in a publication are based on Official Statistics of Finland, the publication can be published in the OSF publication series without a separate decision. If there are other data sources, its publication in the OSF publication series requires an approval of the Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland, which assesses whether the mode of presentation of data in it complies with the OSF principles. Subsequent changes in the contents of the publication do not require a new assessment.

1.3.1. Presentations/descriptions of compilation publications and compilation publication series on the Internet

Descriptive information on a publication: Presentation/description page of publication

Each OSF compilation publication has its own presentation page on the web. The page must be permanent and have a fixed URL address. The page is identified by the OSF logo or stamp. The presentation page shall contain the following information:

  • Name and time of publishing of the publication,
  • Description (objective, areas covered, etc.) and scope of the contents of the publication,
  • Information about the time the data cover,
  • Links to the home pages of the OSF statistics used in the publication to the extent necessary,
  • Link to the home page of the publication series,
  • Name of a person who can provide further information and contact details (for example, a link to a contacting form),
  • Information on how the publication can be obtained (incl. price) or if a web publication is concerned, a link to it,
  • ISBN and ISSN codes of the publication.

Descriptive information on a publication series: summary page of a publication series

An OSF compilation publication series must have its own summary web page at least in Finnish and Swedish, which is linked to the OSF portal. The page must be permanent and have a fixed URL address. The page is identified by the OSF logo or stamp. At least the following must be found on the summary page:

  • Name of the publication series,
  • Description of the publication series (objective, areas covered, etc.),
  • OSF key words describing the contents of the publication series to the extent necessary,
  • Publication rhythm/frequency and date of next publication,
  • Name of a person who can provide further information and contact details (for example, a link to a contacting form),
  • Information on how the publication can be obtained (incl. price) or if a web publication is concerned, a link to it,
  • ISSN code of the publication series.

In addition the page must contain links to the descriptions of the publications in the series or to the publications, or a list of the publications in the series.

1.3.2. Identifying notations in compilation publications

Each compilation publication series has a series code (ISSN). It is recommended that an ISBN code be obtained for an individual publication in addition to the series identifiers.

When a compilation publication is published on the web it must be identifiable as a separate entity. Use of the OSF stamp on the page of the publication is recommended. The packaging or identifying notations of a publication in disc format must show an OSF identifier (logo or stamp). Use of the OSF stamp is recommended for computer screens.2. OSF identifiers

2.1. OSF logo and stamp

The logo of Official Statistics of Finland is as follows:

The logo of Official Statistics of Finland has three versions; black, blue and negative

  • The tone of the blue logo is c100%, m50%.
  • The pantone is 3015C for coated paper and 3005U for uncoated paper.

The sign or stamp of Official Statistics of Finland is as follows:

The stamp has two versions, red and grey.

  • The tone of the red is #CC3333 (R204 G51 B51) on web pages and C11 M100 Y87 K3 in printed works.
  • The tone of the grey is #808080 (R128 G128 B128) and C57 M56 Y29 K5 or K50 in printed works.

2.2 ISSN and ISBN codes

Web publications of Official Statistics of Finland are identified by the ISSN code 1796-0479, printed publication by the code 1795-5165 and CD-ROM discs by the code 1796-7082. Each OSF publication (sub-series) also has an ISSN code of its own. An ISBN code can also be obtained for an individual publication. The ISSN and ISBN codes of all versions of the publication must be given in all copies of the publication. If the publication is issued in different language versions, it is recommended that their codes are also given in all language versions.

The codes are shown in publications as follows:

  • ISSN 1796–0479 = Official Statistics of Finland – (web publication)
  • ISSN 1795-5165 = Official Statistics of Finland – (printed publication)
  • ISSN 1796-7082 = Official Statistics of Finland – (CD-ROM)

Guidance on ISBN and ISSN codes is available from the National Library of Finland http://www.nationallibrary.fi/publishers.html

3. Contents of publications

3.1. Table notations

Tables must be titled, and in printed publications numbered consecutively. If the number of tables is large (more than ten), a separate list of tables must also be published.

The OSF stamp (with linking) can be attached to the titles of tables presented on the website.

Tables must also include source references if uncertainty can arise of the origin of the data in them, for example in compilation publications. In compilation publications in which tables are based on both OSF statistics and other statistics, the stamp or identifier SVT/FOS/OSF (depending on language) is placed in front of source references in the tables based on OSF statistics.

Where necessary, footnotes can are used to give information about definitions of the variables in the table, discontinuities, etc.

3.1.1. Recommendations on table notations

The following symbols are used in the tables of OSF publications:

0.0 Magnitude less than half of unit employed

. Category not applicable

.. Data not available or too uncertain for presentation, or subject to secrecy

.... or – Nil observations

* Preliminary data

Additionally:

The radix on which percentages are based must always be given in tables.

Likewise, the base year or base point of time of indices.

3.2. Guidelines on statistical graphics

Figures must have a title and a source reference. If the number of figures is large, a separate list of figures must be compiled, and figures in printed publications must be numbered. Footnotes and clarifying legends can be used as necessary. Figures can be equipped with the OSF stamp which may also be placed in connection with the source reference.

The statistical graphics used in publications must be clear. The use of three-dimensional graphics is not recommended if the third dimension has no content. Breaking of bar chart scales or other solutions that distort the message of the figure should be avoided.

3.3. Lists of sources

Each OSF publication, whether printed or electronic, must contain a list of sources comprising all the source data referred to in the text or tables. The list of sources is placed at the end of printed publications and on web pages in an appropriate place in the publication. A list of literature related to the topic can be compiled separately.

When a compilation publication includes references to both OSF and other statistics it is recommended that the OSF statistics should be clearly distinguished from the others by, for example, the OSF stamp. As far as possible, referring to other statistics than OSF should be made in accordance with the principles of OSF referencing instructions.

The URL addresses of the OSF statistics used in the publication must be given in printed publications. Links are respectively given in web publications. In compilation publications or other publications with a high number of source references, statistics can be referred to by name and the URL address of the OSF portal only given in the list of sources.

3.4. Referencing instructions

It is recommended that when statistics are published general instructions are given on how to refer to Official Statistics of Finland. In printed publications the instructions should be printed as part of the publication under the heading of, for example, "Referring to the data in these statistics." In web publications, a link to the instructions can be placed on the home page of the statistics.

It is recommended that the referring should primarily be made to the web pages of the statistics as they always contain the most up-to-date data and errors, for example, have been corrected in them.

The primary target of reference (that is, the term in the first reference) in all referencing should be Official Statistics of Finland. Depending on the level to which reference is made the URL address directs either to the OSF portal (reference to the general OSF page and statistical series) or to the producer's website (reference to a certain set of statistics or part of it).

3.4.1. Guidelines on referring to OSF web pages

A. Referring to the start page of the OSF portal and its sub-pages

The portal of Official Statistics of Finland is the target for references and links when the desire is to refer the users generally to OSF, OSF principles, etc. As direct a path to the URL address as possible must be used in references to the general pages of the portal. The publisher is the Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland.

"Official Statistics of Finland": name of web page [e-publication]. Helsinki: Advisory Board of Official Statistics of Finland [referred date] Access method <URL address, as a link if possible>;

Examples:

Suomen virallinen tilasto: Perus- ja laatukriteerit [verkkojulkaisu]. Helsinki: SVT-neuvottelukunta [viitattu 13.5.2009]. Saantitapa: http://tilastokeskus.fi/meta/svt/svtlaatukriteerit.html.

Finlands officiella statistik: Grund- och kvalitetskriterier [e-publikation]. Helsingfors: Delegationen för FOS [hänvisat 3.2.2009]. Åtkomstsätt: http://tilastokeskus.fi/meta/svt/svtlaatukriteeerit_sv.html.

Official Statistics of Finland: Basic and Quality Criteria [web publication). Helsinki: Advisory Board of OSF [referred 3.2.2009]. Access method: http://tilastokeskus.fi/meta/svt/svtlaatukriteerit_en.html.

B. Referring to a set of statistics as an entity

When reference is made to a set of statistics or a compilation publication series as an entity, it is recommended that a URL address which refers to the summary page of the OSF portal be used.

"Official Statistics of Finland": Statistical series [web publication]. ISSN = ISSN* code of statistical series. Place of publication: producer [referred date]. Access method <URL address, as a link if possible>;

Examples:

Suomen virallinen tilasto: Työvoimatutkimus [verkkojulkaisu]. ISSN = 1796-4938. Helsinki: Tilastokeskus [viitattu 15.12.2009]. Saantitapa: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/index.html.

Finlands officiella statistik: Arbetskraftsundersökning [e-publikation]. Helsingfors: Statistikcentralen [hänvisat 15.12.2009]. Åtkomstsätt: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/index_sv.html.

Official Statistics of Finland: Labour Force Survey [e-publication). ISSN=1797-0415. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred 15.12.2009]. Access method: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/index_en.html.

 

C. Referring to statistics or a publication of a certain point in time

Basic publications of Official Statistics of Finland are identified with a series title (= name of statistics or compilation publication) and the reference period of the statistics. The recommended URL address should direct to the producer's own website. If the number of source references is high, the URL address of the OSF portal can be given and the used publications identified by title.

"Official Statistics of Finland": Statistical series [web publication]. ISSN = ISSN* code of statistical series. Reference point in time of the statistics Place of publication: producer [referred date]. Access method <URL address, as a link if possible>;

Examples:

Suomen virallinen tilasto: Työvoimatutkimus [verkkojulkaisu]. ISSN = 1796-4938. Lokakuu 2009 Helsinki: Tilastokeskus [viitattu 15.12.2009]. Saantitapa: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/2009/10/tyti_2009_10_2009-11-24_tie_001_fi.html.

Finlands officiella statistik: Arbetskraftsundersökning [e-publikation]. Oktober 2009. Helsingfors: Statistikcentralen [hänvisat 15.12.2009]. Åtkomstsätt: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/2009/10/tyti_2009_10_2009-11-24_tie_001_sv.html.

Official Statistics of Finland: Labour Force Survey [e-publication). ISSN=1797-0415. October 2009. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred 15.12.2009]. Access method: http://tilastokeskus.fi/til/tyti/2009/10/tyti_2009_10_2009-11-24_tie_001_en.html.

 

D. Referring to individual releases, statistical tables or metadata

When reference is made to a certain part of a publication it must be ascertained whether the target of reference is a permanent one or, for example, a database table which may be different at some other point in time. Reference should be targeted at permanent elements on the website. Below are two examples of how reference should be made to parts of an individual publication. Wherever possible the recommendation can also be complied with in cases other than those selected as examples here.

"Official Statistics of Finland": statistical series [type of publication. ISSN = ISSN* code of statistical series. Statistical reference point in time, Release: heading of release/Table: heading of statistical table: name of statistics. Place of publication: producer [referred date]. Access method <for the time being the URL address of the release, general view of tables or general view of figures can be given >

Examples:

Official Statistics of Finland: Consumer Price Index [web publication]. ISSN = 1796-3524. December 2008, Table: Consumer Price Index (2005=100). Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred 15 Dec. 2009]. Access method: http://193.166.171.75/Dialog/varval.asp?ma=010_khi_tau_101_en&ti=Consumer+Price+Index+2005%3D100&path=../Database/StatFin/hin/khi/&lang=1&multilang=en.

Official Statistics of Finland: Consumer Price Index [web publication]. ISSN = 1796-3524. December 2008, Inflation 3.5 per cent in December. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred 15 Dec. 2009]. Access method: http://stat.fi/til/khi/2008/12/khi_2008_12_2009-01-14_tie_001_en.html.

E. Referring to a printed publication or CD-ROM

Reference is made to printed publications and CD-ROM products by applying a similar practice as when referring to statistics on the web.

"Official Statistics of Finland": Statistical series [printed product, CD-ROM]. ISSN = ISSN* code of statistical series. Reference point in time of the statistics. Place of publication: producer.

Example:

Official Statistics of Finland: Statistics on pension recipients in Finland by municipality [printed product]. ISSN = 1238-1004. 2008. Helsinki: Finnish Centre for Pensions, Social Insurance.

 

F. Referring to a part of a printed publication

Below is an example of how reference should be made to parts of an individual publication.

"Official Statistics of Finland": statistical series [type of publication. ISSN = ISSN* code of statistical series. Statistical reference point in time, Table [number or page]: heading of statistical table. Place of publication: producer.

Example:

Official Statistics of Finland: Statistics on pension recipients in Finland by municipality [printed product]. ISSN = 1238-1004. 2008. Table 5: Pension recipients and their shares of population by type of pension. Helsinki: Finnish Centre for Pensions, Social Insurance Institution.

 

3.5. Use of personal names

Basic publications of Official Statistics of Finland are not issued under the name of an individual person. However, persons responsible for the compilation of a publication and their contact details are given in the foreword and/or in connection with the contact information in the publication.

However, the name of the editor may be given on the cover leaf of compilation publications. It should be ascertained from the separate referencing instructions that the publication is referred to in compliance with the OSF guidelines.

3.6. Changes to published statistical data

3.6.1. Correction of errors

Correction of errors in statistical data in the web services or printed publications primarily aims to guarantee the use of correct data and ensure that erroneous data are corrected as efficiently as possible. In addition, transparent correction procedures help maintain users' confidence in the producer of the statistics.

If significant errors are detected in a statistical publication or in a web service, the following instructions are observed in the correction procedures:

Main rule

Information on a significant error is disseminated at least to the same audiences and with the same visibility as the original data. However, if the erroneous information has received much publicity, the error may require publishing of a separate correction release to larger audiences and with more visibility than originally.

Information on the error must remain permanently visible, with the exception of tables in databases.

Notifications of significant errors and the time of correction are added to the web page on changes in these statistics.

Publishing and related releases

Significant errors found in connection with publishing are corrected by releasing a correction release, which is distributed to the same audiences as the erroneous data. An error in the web service must be corrected as fast and visibly as possible. A separate notification on the correction procedure should be given on the web page on changes in these statistics, for example.

PDF publications

Errors are corrected as promptly as possible. The reason for the correction should also be given. The revised data are indicated clearly in connection with the original data and publication so that the erroneous data can be located.

Printed products

Infrequently, annually and quarterly issued publications: a correction sheet is inserted into undistributed publications and a correction release is sent to the subscribers whose address is known. If there are several errors, a new edition is issued of the publication.

Monthly publications: the error is corrected in the next publication. A separate release is prepared about major errors and distributed to the subscribers of the publication.

Static tables (Excel, html)

The corrected information/changed item is indicated in the tables in the manner that the correction can be located. When and what was corrected is specified in a footnote to the table.

Tables in databases

In connection with the correction, optimally detailed information on the correction that will be visible until the next update is attached to the table.

CD-ROM

A corrected file and a release about the error are sent to the customer.

3.6.2. Revisions of statistics

Some of the changes to already published statistical data are caused by a normal process.

Preliminary data become final: Information is given of the preliminary nature of the data upon publication. The schedule for data revisions is given in the same context.

Review of the statistical system: The concepts, names, classifications or methodologies of statistics may change. A change of the comparison period may also cause changes to already published statistical figures. Users must be informed about such revisions well in advance and a permanent notification of the change must remain on the home page of the statistics. The minimum requirement is that a release about the revision is posted on the home page of the statistics. The release must explain the reasons and justifications for the revision, and contain information about its timing and impact on time series.

4. Timing of publication

Publishing of OSF statistics and publications is monitored by means of continuously updated release calendars on the Internet. A release calendar is kept of releases in Finnish, Swedish and English. Each producer is responsible for the release calendar of its own statistics and monitors its reliability.

The release calendar must give the release times of statistics and publications:

At the start of the calendar year, at least at the accuracy of one month,

Three months in advance, at least at the accuracy of one week, and

In the week prior to the release week, at least at the accuracy of one day.

Statistics must always be released at the same time of the day. Exceptions would be, for example, the organisation of a press conference or other reason relating to the dissemination of data.

If preliminary data are released from a set of statistics prior to official releasing of data, the principles concerning them must be published on the producer's website linked to the home page of the statistics concerned.

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