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Newsletters - Innovation and Technology Update - Bulletin No. 13, December 2005
 
 

CONTENTS
1 Introduction

2 Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Statistics
2.1 Information and communication technology (ICT) reference group
2.2 Household Use of Information Technology
2.3 Use of Information Technology by Households in Queensland
2.4 Business Use of Information Technology
2.5 Small Business use of Information Technology
2.6 Farm use of Information Technology
2.7 Internet activity
2.8 ICT satellite account

3 Research and Experimental development (R&D) Statistics
3.1 Business R&D survey 2003-04
3.2Biotechnology related R & D
3.3 Government and private non-profit R&D surveys 2004-05
3.4 Higher Education R&D survey 2004
3.5 International standards

4 Innovation Statistics
4.1 Release of 'Innovation in Australian Business, 2003'

5 ABS Information
5.1 Year Book Australia

6 Other Information
6.1 Subscriber e-mailing list
6.2 Innovation Science and Technology Theme page

1 INTRODUCTION

Welcome to the 13th edition of the ABS'
Innovation and Technology Statistics Update. The Update provides information on statistical developments and data releases in the innovation and technology field, and is prepared by the Innovation and Technology National Statistics Centre in Canberra.

We hope you find the
Update useful and would appreciate any feedback you have to offer. Please send any comments to louise.talbot@abs.gov.au

2 INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT) STATISTICS

2.1 Information and communication technology (ICT) reference group

The ABS established an ICT reference group in early 2004 involving government, industry, academic and community representatives. The aim of the reference group is to improve the usefulness of ICT statistics in Australia from a variety of sources. The reference group provides a high level forum for understanding, improving and developing ICT statistics, providing members with the opportunity to discuss and consider strategies to address ICT statistical issues.


The most recent meeting was held on the 11th October 2005 and issues discussed included:

  • Information on the National Data Network (NDN). The NDN is a national platform for acquiring, sharing and integrating data relevant to policy and research. It will link and share data so that the best use can be made of our national information resources without compromising standards of privacy and intellectual property.
  • Developments regarding the ICT Information Development Plan (IDP) which will take a lower priority for 12 months while resources are allocated to Innovation statistical developments. However a preliminary draft has been prepared and a watching brief will be maintained on major inputs including key policy drivers.
  • Broadband definitions and monitoring were discussed. Currently, the ABS defines Broadband as an 'always on' Internet connection with access speeds of 256 kilobits per second (kbps) or above.
  • Technology of possible upcoming interest including Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) which is reportedly experiencing high growth worldwide.
  • An Integrated Business Characteristics Strategy (IBCS) for the collection of business characteristics data was presented. The strategy focusses on capturing business characteristics data through, initially, the integration of two existing ABS surveys, the Business Use of Information Technology (BUIT) survey and the Innovation Survey. The longer term strategy is to integrate other characteristics data.

2.2 Household use of Information Technology

The publication Household Use of Information Technology, Australia 2004-05 (ABS cat. no. 8146.0) was released on 15 December 2005.
Data was collected on the ABS Multi-Purpose Household Survey (MPHS) for 2004-05, which covers a proportion of the households in the ABS Monthly Population Survey. The MPHS will be conducted on an annual basis and will serve as a stable collection vehicle for the Household use of IT data. The survey has a sample size of approximately 13,500 households.


2.3 Use of Information Technology by Households in Queensland, (ABS cat. no. 8146.3) publication was released on 30 November 2005. The statistics in this publication were compiled from four different national surveys, conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) between 1998 and 2003. Information was obtained about the access and use of computers and the Internet by private households via the 1998, 1999 and 2000 Population Survey Monitor; 2001 Survey of Education, Training and Information Technology; 2002 General Social Survey; and the 2003 Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.

For further information about these and related statistics, contact the National Information and Referral Service on 1300 135 070 or Statistical Consultancy Unit on Brisbane (07) 3222 6012.


2.4 Business Use of Information Technology

The most recent
Business Use of Information Technology, Australia (ABS cat. no. 8129.0) publication was released on 17 March 2005 and presents the results of the survey conducted in respect of 2003-04.

2.5 Small Business Use of Information Technology

The publication Characteristics of Small Business, Australia (ABS cat. no. 8127.0) was released on 28 April 2005. This publication presents the results of the Characteristics of Small Business Operators Survey which was conducted in June 2004 as a supplementary topic in the ABS Monthly Population Survey.

2.6 Farm use of Information Technology

The ABS publication
Use of Information Technology on Farms, Australia (ABS cat. no. 8150.0) was released on 28 November 2005. This publication presents statistics on the use of computers and the Internet on farms in Australia. The data were obtained from questions included in the 2003-04 Agricultural Survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Information obtained was in respect of the year ended 30 June 2004. Comparative data from the 2002-03 Agricultural Survey have also been included.

Findings from the latest publication include:

  • In 2003-04, 55% (72,342 ) of the 130,526 Australian farms with an estimated value of agriculture earnings (EVAO) of $5,000 or more used a computer and 47% (or 61,082 ) used the Internet as part of their business operations. Both computer and Internet usage rates have increased by 1 percentage point from 2002-03.


For further information about these and related statistics, contact Nick Deverson, Innovation and Technology Business Statistics Centre, Australian Bureau of Statistics, GPO Box K881, Perth WA 6842, or phone Perth (08) 9360 5323, or email nick.deverson@abs.gov.au.

2.7 Internet activity

Review of the Internet Activity Survey

The ABS had previously notified users of this data of a reduction in the frequency of the Internet Activity survey to an annual basis, with the next survey due to be conducted in respect of March 2006. More recently a decision has been made to review the collection to address ongoing concerns with the quality and relevance of the data produced. The review will consider ongoing requirements for the current range of data, new and emerging data needs related to Internet Activity, methodology, scope and data collection mechanisms. Pending the outcome of this review, the survey has been suspended for at least the period up to September 2006.

If you wish to know more about the review or provide input, please write to the Mike Scott, Director, Innovation and Technology Business Statistics Centre, Australian Bureau of Statistics, GPO Box K881, Perth, WA, 6842, or email mike.scott@abs.gov.au.

2.8 ICT satellite account

The National Accounts Research section of the ABS is compiling an ICT satellite account in respect of 2002-03. A publication date has now been set for this product and it is the 7th March 2006. The title of this publication will be Australian National Accounts: Information and Communication Technology Satellite Account (ABS cat. no. 5259.0).


3 RESEARCH & EXPERIMENTAL DEVELOPMENT (R&D) STATISTICS

3.1 Business R&D survey 2003-04

The results of Research and Experimental Development Businesses, Australia 2003-04, (ABS cat. no. 8104.0) were published on 28 September 2005. The publication includes details of R&D expenditure and human resources devoted to R&D classified by type of expenditure, location of expenditure, source of funds, type of employee, type of activity, research fields and socioeconomic objectives.

Findings include:

  • Business expenditure on R&D (BERD) in Australia in 2003-04 was estimated to be $7,220m at current prices, 10% higher than that recorded in 2002-03. This is the highest level recorded and is the fourth successive year of increase following the declines from 1995-96 to 1998-99 and the levelling off between 1998-99 and 1999-2000.
  • The Manufacturing industry was the largest contributor (46%) to total BERD. The Property and business services, Mining and Finance and insurance industries were the next largest contributors to BERD at 23%, 11% and 9% respectively. Commentary focuses on the six largest industry divisions, which together contribute 96% of BERD.

3.2 Biotechnology related R&D

The 2003-04 Business R&D survey also collected information specific to biotechnology related R&D. Businesses that performed and/or paid others to perform biotechnology related R&D (extramural) on their behalf, were asked additional questions. Extramural R&D is out of scope of BERD, hence the extramural portion of biotechnology related R&D expenditure reported in the publication is not a component of BERD.

Findings from the publication include:

  • In 2003-04, 304 businesses performed and/or paid another to perform biotechnology related R&D, totalling $377.8m in expenditure.
  • There was $270.8m (3.8% of BERD) of biotechnology related R&D expenditure, which was performed by 226 businesses. There were 155 businesses which paid $107.0m to others to perform biotechnology related R&D. Property and business services reported the highest number of biotechnology active businesses and the highest level of expenditure on both biotechnology related R&D performed by the business ($187.1m) and paid to another ($81.2m).
  • Most businesses classified their biotechnology related R&D to Human health, which represented $262.7m or 70% of total biotechnology related R&D expenditure. Agricultural biotechnology had the next highest expenditure of $43.4m or 11% of total biotechnology related R&D expenditure.

For further information about these and related statistics, contact Kirsty Rothenbury on Perth (08) 9360 5382, or email kirsty.rothenbury@abs.gov.au.

3.3 Government and private non-profit R&D surveys 2004-05

The biennial survey of Government and Private Non-Profit organisations will be undertaken for the 2004-05 reference period. Similar information to that collected in the Business survey will be sought. Specific information on the Biotechnology sector will also be collected, similar to that collected in the 2003-04 Business survey.

Summary statistics will be contained
in the publication Research and Experimental Development, Government and Private Non-Profit Organisations, Australia 2004-05 (ABS cat. no. 8109.0) which is expected to be released in August 2006.

3.4 Higher Education R&D survey 2004

The biennial survey of Higher Education organisations in respect of the 2004 calendar year will be published in
Research and Experimental Development, Higher Education Organisations 2004 (cat. no 8111.0) which is expected to be released in July 2006.

3.5 International standards

The ABS surveys of R&D are conducted in accordance with standard guidelines promulgated by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and contained in the OECD publication,
The Measurement of Scientific and Technological Activities ('Frascati Manual' 2002), available as a free PDF file by visiting http://www.oecd.org.

4 INNOVATION STATISTICS

4.1 Release of 'Innovation in Australian Business, 2003'

The ABS released the publication
Innovation in Australian Business, 2003 (cat. no. 8158.0) on 17 February 2005. It presents results from the 2003 Innovation Survey, where the ABS collected details of technological, organisational and managerial innovation in a wide range of industries, including service industries.

The ABS is currently investigating producing a confidentialised unit record file (CURF) from the Innovation Survey 2003 dataset.

The survey was based on concepts and standard questions developed jointly by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and Eurostat. The concepts have been published in 'OECD Proposed Guidelines for Collecting and Interpreting Technological Innovation Data' (OECD, Paris, 1997), known as the Oslo Manual. This Manual is available as a free PDF file by visiting
http://www.oecd.org.

For further information, please contact Peter Hodgson at peter.hodgson@abs.gov.au.

5 ABS INFORMATION

5.1 Year Book Australia 2005

Image: Year Book Australia 2005 logo
The
Year Book Australia 2005 is a comprehensive source of information about Australia.

Please note that all ABS catalogued publications are available free of charge on the ABS website.

6 OTHER INFORMATION

6.1 Subscriber e-mailing list

We are happy to add new subscribers to the
Update to our e-mailing list. If you did not receive a link to this edition directly from us and would like to be alerted to future editions, or if you would like to unsubscribe to the update, please contact louise.talbot@abs.gov.au

Previous editions of our
Update can be viewed here, or by visiting the ABS website.

6.2 Innovation Science and Technology Theme page

We have a theme page on the ABS website. The theme page provides links to current information on statistical releases and contacts, and now includes a glossary of terms. It will also enable you to link to other sites of interest. The theme page can be accessed by clicking on the following link:
Innovation, Science and Technology

If you have any questions about our theme page, please contact louise.talbot@abs.gov.au



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