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3238.0.55.003 - Information Paper: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographic Statistics Work Program and Release Plans, Apr 2012  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 30/04/2012  First Issue
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Stakeholder Consultation


ABS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographic Statistics Stakeholder Consultation Review

During the period from December 2010 to July 2011, ABS conducted a review into ABS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander demographic statistics. The review was held in response to unprecedented demand for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander demographic statistics for government reporting and concerns raised by some stakeholders about the demographic methods and assumptions used in compiling these statistics. The aim of the review was to consult key Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, communities and organisations as well as key policy stakeholders and data users, in all states and territories, to better understand expectations and concerns about the relevance, quality and communication of existing ABS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander demographic statistics. The final report yielded 36 recommendations.

Some of the recommendations being implemented included:

  • the creation of an expert advisory group;
  • the compilation of a cohort analysis of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Census counts;
  • the repeat of the Census Data Enhancement project on a comparable basis to 2006;
  • investigating the feasibility of producing life tables on alternate geographies; and
  • the adoption of appropriate language in ABS publications and papers.
To maximise the relevance, quality, and usefulness of selected national and sub-national Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander demographic statistics compiled and released by the ABS, the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographics Statistics Expert Advisory Group (ATSIDSEAG) was formed in December 2011. It is designed to run in parallel to the Population Estimates Technical Workshop (PETW) and other ABS stakeholder consultation strategies to provide technical advice and guidance on methodological issues and communication and engagement strategies.

ABS are currently undertaking a cohort analysis of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Census counts from 2001, 2006 and 2011 by age, sex, Indigenous status, state and territory. This analysis complements quality assurance processes undertaken as part of 2011 Census processing and rebasing the ABS population estimates series to the 2011 Census.

Once the 2011 Census to deaths linked data are available, ABS plans to investigate the feasibility of producing life tables and life expectancy estimates that will allow dissection by alternative geographies such as Remoteness Areas; Northern Australia; South East Australia (Victoria, Tasmania, the Australian Capital Territory, Jervis Bay Territory, plus parts of NSW); and for South Australia using aggregated mortality data over an increased number of years (5-7 years).

ABS is improving the use of appropriate language in its publications and products. For example, "experimental" and "indigenous" are no longer to be used, due to feedback received from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. The term "experimental" is considered inappropriate because of its connotations with the history of anthropological research on Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples while "indigenous" has been discontinued as it is considered disrespectful.

Stakeholder Engagement
A key component of ABS plans for the rebasing of population estimates to the 2011 Census results involves keeping a wide range of stakeholders informed as the work progresses including discussing and explaining methodologies to be used, providing more information on detailed release plans and advising progress updates.

Stakeholder meetings already conducted include:

  • Annual ABS Population Estimates Technical Workshop
          • Darwin, September 2010
          • Melbourne, December 2011;
  • An additional rebasing methods Population Estimates Technical Workshop, Adelaide, May 2011;
  • Several individual bilateral briefings and meetings with Australian, state and territory government representatives by ABS Demography program senior managers and;
  • Two meetings of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographic Statistics Expert Advisory Group.

The release of this information paper is also an opportunity for outlining and communicating plans for stakeholders and seeking additional comments and feedback from a wider range of data users and stakeholders (see details at the end of the paper).

Looking ahead, the ABS has planned the following stakeholder engagement opportunities.


Schedule of Stakeholder Meetings and Events

DateEvent
May 2012 ABS Demography Statistics Advisory Group (DemSAG)
May 20122012 ABS State Statistical Forum with senior state and territory government representatives
20 June 2012Release of preliminary rebased population estimates for the total population
June 2012Briefing of representatives from key Australian, state and territory government agencies on ERP, Census and PES
21 June 2012Release of 2011 Census results and Census Post Enumeration Survey results
June 2012Third meeting of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographic Statistics Expert Advisory Group
5 July 2012Release of Information Paper: Ensuring the Quality of Rebased Population Estimates, 2011 (cat. no. 3250.0)
October 2012Expert Advisory Group
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander statistics estimates methodology briefings and workshops
5-7 December 2012Australian Population Association Conference

ABS continues to plan stakeholder consultation in 2013, including the ABS State Statistical Forum and the Population Estimates Technical Workshop. Other stakeholder briefings, workshops and consultations regarding life tables and life expectancy estimates methodology and results and population projection assumptions for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population will also be conducted.


Consultation on assumptions for the backcast estimates and population projections
Consultation on the assumptions for compilation of the 2001-2010 backcast population estimates, and the population projections for 2012-2026 will be undertaken in late 2013 and early 2014. In response to the recommendations from the recent ABS Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Demographic Statistics Stakeholder Consultation Review, ABS intends to undertake earlier and ongoing consultation with a broader range of stakeholders.

Schedule of Proposed ABS Publication Releases

Date of releaseProduct
June 2012Census of Population and Housing and Post Enumeration Survey results (cat. no. 2940.0)

Population Distribution, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2011 (cat. no. 4705.0), first wave release

July 2012Population Distribution, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2011 (cat. no. 4705.0), second wave release

September 2012Australian Demographic Statistics, Mar 2011 (cat. no. 3101.0), will contain the preliminary population estimates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians as at 30 June 2011

October 2012Births, Australia, 2011 (cat no. 3301.0)

November 2012Deaths, Australia, 2011 (cat no. 3301.0)

April 2013Population Characteristics, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2011 (cat. no. 4713.0)

August 2013Population Estimates, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2011 (cat. no. 3238.0.55.001)

September 2013Australian Demographic Statistics, Mar 2012 (cat. no. 3101.0)

October 2013Births, Australia, 2012 (cat no. 3301.0)

November 2013Deaths, Australia, 2012 (cat no. 3301.0)

Late 2013Life Tables for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2010-2012 (cat. no. 3302.0.55.003)

First half of 2014Estimates and Projections, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2011-2026 (cat. no. 3238.0)

Contact details

For further information or questions, or to provide feedback on proposals in this information paper, please contact Shahidullah on 02 6252 6487 or email <demography@abs.gov.au>.


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