The National Localities Index (NLI) has been developed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) to assist users assign the Main Structure codes of the Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) to address based data. The ASGC is the classification used by the ABS for the collection and dissemination of geographic statistics and is an essential reference for users to understand and interpret the geographical content of ABS statistics. Coding data to the ASGC Main Structure allows data to be directly compared to ABS and other information.
Editions of the NLI are released in mid-July and reflect the new edition of the ASGC which came into effect on the first of that month.
Between editions the NLI is regularly updated to include new localities, commercial and residential developments and postcode changes. These updates continue to reflect the ASGC current at the time. The most recent NLI update is available for download from this site. NLI updates are usually made available in early November, February and May of each year.
The NLI consists of two parts - a Localities Index and a Streets Sub-Index. The definition of ‘Locality’ is kept very broad to make the NLI as comprehensive as possible. It is defined as a place where people live or work - or say they live or work.
The majority of Localities are wholly within one Statistical Local Area (SLA) and address data for these Localities can be coded to the ASGC using only the Localities Index. The remainder of the Localities, approximately 5%, cross SLA boundaries. The NLI Streets Sub-Index contains street data for these split Localities - names, types and number ranges - so that addresses can be coded to their respective SLA.
A new edition of the NLI is released each year to reflect any ASGC changes. The ABS encourages organisations to use the ASGC and the NLI to improve the comparability and usefulness of data with a geographical dimension. Any suggestions for improvement to this Index may be made by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) does not warrant that the National Localities Index (NLI) is error free.
The NLI is intended to assign Australian Standard Geographical Classification Main Structure codes on the basis of an address containing a State, Locality, Postcode, Street Name, Street Type and Street Number. The NLI is not intended to assign codes on the basis of Lot numbers, RMB numbers, Property names or PO Box addresses or in circumstances where the address information is incorrect, incomplete or ambiguous.
The street name and number data used to compile the NLI is, by its nature, incomplete. Many roads in rural and remote areas do not have an official name. Street numbers are not used in many rural and remote areas and there is no reliable source of street numbering in many towns and parts of cities. Street numbering along a street can be inconsistent or ambiguous.
Postcode boundaries change with the operational requirements of Australia Post. While the ABS regularly checks postcodes on the NLI against Australia Post postcode lists, the postcode associated with a Locality on the NLI may not be the Locality’s current postcode.
While the ABS endeavours to keep the NLI as up to date as possible, very recent developments may not be included.