The newly released PRIZM® QC features 57 segments that capture current demographics, lifestyles and values in Quebec. Developed using dozens of authoritative data sources, PRIZM® QC differs from the national system due to the complex nature of Quebec's society. The francophone PRIZM® QC segments roll up to the 14 francophone PRIZM® segments so that users with national customer files, as well as large numbers of customers in Quebec, can get the best of both worlds.

From marketing strategies and site decisions to merchandising, mobile analytics and media planning, PRIZM® QC powers decision-making. Businesses, not-for-profits and government agencies all use PRIZM® QC to analyze and engage their customers and markets at the neighbourhood level anywhere in Quebec.

There are some key PRIZM® QC and Demographic definitions, along with additional resources linked for your reference: release notes, variable lists, metadata, and other information.

PRIZM® QC Definitions

Socioeconomic Status Indicator (SESI): The individual segment numbers are based on SESI, a composite score that reflects a variety of factors, such as average household income, discretionary income, educational attainment levels, the value of private dwellings, average net worth and household size. The 57 segments have been ranked from one to 57 on the SESI scale, with one classified as the highest. Because this ranking reflects more than income alone, most of the segments have a SESI score that is different from their average household income ranking.

Social Groups: The 57 segments are organized into 15 Social Groups based on the urban-rural context, home language (English, French and non-official), affluence, family status, age of maintainer and ethnicity. Social Groups represent various groupings, patterns and trends. Each segment is also assigned to one of four settlement types: Urban, Urban Fringe, Suburban or Rural.

  • Urban segments are found in large- and medium-sized cities
  • Urban Fringe segments reflect once suburban areas that, over the last 30 years, have been absorbed by urban sprawl
  • Suburban segments tend to consist of communities located on the outskirts of cities and can often be found in the core neighbourhoods of smaller cities and larger towns
  • Rural segments reflect areas that are smaller than towns and include very small towns, villages, hamlets, rural farms and isolated areas

The ranking of Social Groups is based on average income (not a SESI ranking). Groups have a letter and number combination. The letters U, F, S and R stand for Urban, UrbanFringe, Suburban or Rural, while the numbers refer to income, with one indicating the highest average income for the group and seven representing the lowest.

Demographic Definitions

Age: Refers to the age of an individual. The age categories range from youngest to oldest in the following order: Young (relatively significant presence of those in their 20s and 30s), Younger (30s and 40s), Middle-Aged (40s and 50s), Older (50s and 60s) and Mature (70s and older).

Housing Tenure: Specifies whether a household owns or rents the dwelling, and whether the dwelling is Band Housing (on an Indian Reserve or Settlement). Tenure categories are Homeowners, Renters, and Band Housing.

Education: Refers to the highest level of school attended for people 15 years of age and older. Education categories are Grade 9, High School, Trade, College (includes CEGEP and other non-University certificate or diploma programs), and University.

Job Type: Refers to the occupation of people 15 years of age and older who were employed in the week prior to the Census. The categories are White Collar, Service Sector, Blue Collar and Primary.

Cultural Diversity Index: Based on a combination of immigration, language spoken at home and visible minority status.

Official Language: Based on a person’s knowledge of or ability to speak English, French, both or neither language.

How-to-Read ENVISION Reports


Additional Resources

Our PRIZM® QC product is provided at two levels of geography: FSALDU (postal code) and Dissemination Area (DA).




Along with the release notes, you will see reference to the following:

GeoProfiles: Provides counts of households for each PRIZM® QC segment within specific standard geographies.

License files: Provides the look-up between the combination of FSALDU and community name (Rural Enhanced) as well as the FSALDU (Unique); these files will allow you to assign the correct PRIZM® code to your corresponding customer lists.
Note: If you also license ENVISION, our software will do this coding for you.

Variables List and Metadata: Provides definitions of each of the variables in the corresponding datasets.