Responses to the Ancestry question are classified to the Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG). This classification is revised as part of a periodical review process based on real world change. Changes to the ancestry classification and coding index have significantly affected the data for some responses.

For the Ancestry question in the 2011 Census, responses of Yugoslavia (or similar) were coded to South Eastern European, nfd (not further defined). In 2006 these responses were coded to Serbian. These changes accurately reflect the current Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG).

See also the Ancestry fact sheet.

In 2006, persons responding to the Birthplace question with Serbia were coded to the country Serbia, and persons responding with Yugoslavia, or related variants, were coded to South Eastern Europe, not further defined (nfd) as there was no valid basis in the available data to allocate them to a more specific Birthplace country. However, in 2006 in the case of Ancestry, persons responding as Yugoslav, Yugoslavian, or other similar variants were coded to Serbian. This classification had the impact of increasing the Serbian Ancestry count by 26,281 persons.

For 2011, this inconsistency in treatment across the two response categories was corrected and Ancestry coding was aligned with Birthplace coding practices. Persons responding to the Ancestry question as Yugoslav, Yugoslavian, or other similar variants were coded to South Eastern Europe, nfd. as there was not adequate information to allocate them to a more specific Ancestry classification. In 2011, there were 26,883 persons who responded as Yugoslav, Yugoslavian or a similar variant. The impact of this change in classification can be seen in the tables below.

Table 1. Ancestry Multi Response – coding for Yugoslav, Yugoslavian and variants to Census Ancestry question
  2001 2006 2011
Persons .. 26,281 (a) 26,883 (b)
.. not available


Table 2. Ancestry Multi Response – coding for Serbian and South eastern European, nfd
  2001 2006 2011 Change between 2011 and 2006
Serbian 97,315 95,362 (i) 69,544 -25,818
South Eastern European, nfd 9,799 1,005 27,786 (ii) 26,781
nfd: not further defined
  1. includes (a) from Table 1
  2. includes (b) from Table 1

References

Information about the Ancestry question, in Ancestry topic, in the Information Paper: Census of Population and Housing: ABS Views on Content and Procedures, 2011 (cat. no. 2007.0).

Information about the review of ASCCEG, in Australian Standard Classification of Cultural and Ethnic Groups (ASCCEG), 2011 (cat. no. 1249.0)