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2011.0.55.001 - Information Paper: Census of Population and Housing -- Products and Services, 2011  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/08/2012  First Issue
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Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas (SEIFA)



Socio-Economic Indexes for Areas (SEIFA) provides summary measures derived from the Census to measure different aspects of socio-economic conditions by geographic area. It has a number of applications, including research into the relationship between socio-economic disadvantage and various health and educational outcomes, determining areas that require funding and services, and identifying new business opportunities.

The ABS has developed four indexes to allow ranking of regions and areas, providing a method of determining the level of social and economic well-being in each region.

Each of the four indexes summarises different aspects of the socio-economic conditions of people living in an area; each is based upon a different set of social and economic information from the 2011 Census. The indexes provide more general measures than are given by measuring, for example, income or unemployment alone.

The indexes are:
  • Index of Relative Socio-Economic Disadvantage (IRSD)
  • Index of Relative Socio-Economic Advantage and Disadvantage (IRSAD)
  • Index of Economic Resources (IER)
  • Index of Education and Occupation (IEO).

SEIFA uses a broad definition of relative socio-economic disadvantage in terms of people's access to material and social resources, and their ability to participate in society.

While SEIFA represents an average of all people living in an area, it does not represent the individual situation of each person. Larger areas are more likely to have greater diversity of people and households.

The 2011 SEIFA will be released in Excel format on 28 March 2013, and will be available free of charge from the ABS website.




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