8101.0 - Innovation and Technology Update, 2008  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/07/2008   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product

5. BUSINESS CHARACTERISTICS STATISTICS

5.1 INTEGRATED BUSINESS CHARACTERISTICS STRATEGY
5.2 BUSINESS LONGITUDINAL DATABASE (BLD)
5.3 RECENTLY RELEASED BUSINESS CHARACTERISTICS STATISTICS

5.1 INTEGRATED BUSINESS CHARACTERISTICS STRATEGY

The ABS' Integrated Business Characteristics Strategy (IBCS) integrates the collection and quality assurance of data required for input into the Business Longitudinal Database (BLD) and the production of point in time estimates for: business use of information technology (BUIT); business innovation in Australia; and a broad range of other non-financial business characteristics. The annual Business Characteristics Survey (BCS) is the survey vehicle which achieves this.

A key part of the IBCS is the production of annual BUIT and Business Innovation indicators, with a more detailed set of items for each of these topics collected every second year (i.e. in alternating years). Previously, these IT and innovation indicators were produced from the separate annual Business Use of IT and biennial Innovation surveys, respectively.

As a result of implementing the IBCS, there has been some impact on comparability of the BUIT and Business Innovation data sourced from the BCS with that obtained from the previous separate collections. Some of this is as a result of integration including changes to scope and the composition of the sample. Additionally, more fundamental changes such as expanded and enhanced measures of innovation have had a significant impact on comparability of those data. As more data is collected using the BCS vehicle, the ABS will publish data across time periods.

5.2 BUSINESS LONGITUDINAL DATABASE (BLD)

A key aspect of the Integrated Business Characteristics Strategy is the collection of statistics to populate the Business Longitudinal Database. These directly collected data along with a range of financial information from administrative sources such as the Business Activity Statement will be used to create the BLD. The scope of the BLD is restricted to small and medium businesses. For general information about the BLD, please see Discussion Paper: The first iteration of the Business Longitudinal database (cat no 8164.0) released on 10 May 2007. For general information about the BLD, please contact Helen Harkin, Innovation and Technology NSC, ABS on (02) 6252 6531.

Since the release of this discussion paper, the ABS has determined that the main outputs from the BLD will be a range of Confidentialised Unit Record Files (CURFs). The first of these is currently in development and is expected to be released by mid 2009. For more information about the BLD CURF, please contact Diane Braskic, Innovation and Technology Business Statistics Centre, ABS on (08) 9360 5241.

5.3 BUSINESS CHARACTERISTICS STATISTICS

The new Business Characteristics Survey collects, in addition to BUIT and Innovation topics, a wide range of other information related to business practices and characteristics. Many of these data have not previously been collected and represent an increase in the information available about businesses in Australia. The first issue of the new publication, Selected Characteristics of Australian Businesses, 2005-06 (cat. no. 8167.0) was released on 1 February 2008, with associated data cubes being released on 1 April 2008. The next issue is due for release in late September 2008. For more information about business characteristics outputs (including BUIT, Innovation and general business characteristics), please contact Peter Hodgson, Innovation and Technology Business Statistics Centre, ABS on (08) 9360 5367.

The implementation of the IBCS has provided the ABS with a rich source of annual, integrated information about all businesses (including those not included in the scope of the BLD) at the unit record level. The intention is to undertake a range of analytical projects using these data. Some of these will be updates of those included in section 4.2 of this newsletter. For more information about this range of new analytical work, please contact Helen Harkin, Innovation and Technology NSC, ABS on (02) 6252 6531.