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DHS-IPUMS-I South Africa regions, 1998-2016 [consistent boundaries, GIS]

Codes and Frequencies

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Explore how IPUMS created this variable


DHS_IPUMSI_ZA provides geographic codes for South Africa that match those in the DHS and IPUMS-International databases. This variable can be used to link contextual area data from IPUMS-DHS to IPUMS-International or vice versa. The codes in DHS_IPUMSI_ZA indicate the major administrative unit in which the household was enumerated or surveyed.

GIS shapefiles for South Africa can be downloaded here.

Comparability — General

The units in DHS_IPUMSI_ZA are harmonized across DHS and IPUMS-International samples to account for changing boundaries in the major administrative level of geography. The time span for DHS samples are 1998 to 2016 and corresponds to the census sample from 2001-2016 in IPUMS-International.

Several boundary changes occurred in South Africa from 1998 to 2016:

  • Between 2001 and 2007 - Parts of North West became Northern Cape
  • Between 2001 and 2007 - Parts of Gauteng became North West
  • Between 2001 and 2007 - Parts of Mpumalanga became Limpopo, also the name of Northern Province changed to Limpopo in 2003
  • Between 2001 and 2007 - Parts of Mpumalanga became Gauteng
  • Between 2001 and 2007 - Parts of KwaZulu-Natal became Eastern Cape
  • ~2005: Umzimkulu municipality moved from Eastern Cape to KwaZulu-Natal
  • Between 2007 and 2011, parts of North West became Gauteng


  • All households


  • South Africa: 2001, 2007, 2011, 2016