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STATISTICS NEWS NSW
Implementation of other key outcomes would involve additional costs and appropriate funding is required before they can be progressed. These include:
Further decisions are detailed in the Information Paper: Outcome of the 16th series Australian Consumer Price Index (CPI) review (cat. no. 6469.0).
Census - Beyond the Count conference update
In the lead up to the 2011 Census, there will be an exciting showcase event to promote the effective and innovative use of Census data by government, community and private sector organisations. Census - beyond the count, to be held in Melbourne from 2 to 4 March 2011, will explore the issues that matter to all Australians and how Census data makes a difference.
There has been a great response to the call for speakers and the conference program is almost complete and two keynotes speakers have been announced:
Bernard Salt, demographer and trend forecaster, will be the keynote speaker on Day One. Bernard is a best-selling author of three popular books on demographic change. He is a columnist with The Australian and Melbourne Herald Sun newspapers. He is a Partner with KPMG and heads a group of researchers providing demographic advice to business. Bernard is also one of Australia's most quoted social commentators. He is a regular on many radio and television programs including Sunrise, Today Tonight, A Current Affair and many others. Bernard is a compelling and entertaining speaker, who manages to combine an astute observation of human behaviour and change with hard data. We are certain that you will enjoy his opening presentation at Census | beyond the count .
Dr Cassandra Goldie, CEO of the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) will be the keynote speaker on Day Two. Cassandra has had an extensive career in the human rights and community service sector in Australia and internationally. Prior to her appointment at ACOSS, Cassandra was the Director of the Sex and Age Discrimination Unit at the Australian Human Rights Commission where she played a pivotal role in the Inquiry into the Sex Discrimination Act, Pay Equity, national homelessness legislation, reforms to corporate governance to promote women in leadership and decision making roles, and the campaign to achieve Paid Parental Leave. Cassandra has previously been the Director of the Homelessness Legal Rights Project at UNSW, a consultant to UN Habitat, Senior Executive with Legal Aid in Western Australia and Executive Officer of the Darwin Community Legal Service for five years. We're looking forward to Cassandra's thoughts on how the Census is making a difference to social issues across Australia.
Update on the Census Data Enhancement (CDE) project
The Census Data Enhancement (CDE) project is a major project involving integrating unit record data from the Census of Population and Housing with other ABS and non-ABS datasets to create new datasets for statistical and research purposes. The project also adds value to data from the Census of Population and Housing by bringing it together with data from future Censuses.
The CDE project delivers significant public benefits without compromising the privacy of individuals or the confidentiality of their data. The project facilitates:
The Australian Statistician announced his intention to proceed with a CDE project in August 2005 after extensive discussion and consultation. The project was first undertaken for the 2006 Census and the ABS intends to continue the project for the 2011 Census. The paper Census Data Enhancement Project: An Update, June 2010 (cat. no. 2062.0) provides an update on the outcomes of the 2006 CDE project and presents plans for the continuation of the project for the 2011 Census.
Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) released
On December 23, 2010 Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS): Volume 1 - Main Structure and Greater Capital City Statistical Areas, July 2011 (cat. no. 1270.0.55.001) was released. The ASGS brings all the regions used by the ABS to output data under the one umbrella. The regions are divided into two broad categories:
The ABS structures are a hierarchy of regions developed for the release of particular ABS statistics.
The ASGS will replace the Australian Standard Geographic Classification (ASGC) progressively from July 2011 onwards. The ABS anticipates that all its spatial data will be based on the ASGS by 2013. Data based on ASGC Statistical Local Areas will still be available for the 2011 Census however, for 2012 and beyond the ASGC will no longer be published.
For more information see Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS):Volume 1 - Main Structure and Greater Capital City Statistical Areas, July 2011 (cat. no. 1270.0.55.001) or the Geography Portal on the ABS Website.
First data released from the 2009 Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers
The first results from the 2009 Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers (SDAC) were released in December. The primary objective of the survey was to collect information about three population groups: people with a disability; older people (i.e. those aged 60 years and over); and people who provide assistance to older people and people with disabilities. The 2009 SDAC was largely a repeat of the 2003 survey, with some additions to content in the areas of unmet demand for assistance, social inclusion, and labour force participation.
The results showed that four million Australians (18.5%) had a disability in 2009, and that the prevalence of disability was slightly lower than in 2003 (20%). The proportion of Australians disabled because of physical health conditions such as asthma and back problems declined. In 2003, 6.8% of Australians were disabled because of musculoskeletal disorders like arthritis and back problems, while only 6.5% reported such a disability in 2009. Asthma-related disability also declined, from 0.8% in 2003 to 0.5% in 2009. In particular, the proportion of children (aged 0 to 17 years) disabled by asthma almost halved since 2003, from 0.9% to 0.5%.
All tables appearing in the publication are included in a Data Cube (spreadsheet format) and are accompanied by corresponding Relative Standard Error tables. A series of staggered releases in the form of Data Cubes will be appended to the product between January and April 2011. A summary publication, which will be a consolidation of the progressive releases, will be released on 28 April 2011. For further information see Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2009 (cat. no. 4430.0).Water Account Australia 2008–09 released
Water prices have risen, but Australia is using less water according to the 4th Edition of the Water Account, Australia, 2008-09 (cat. no. 4610.0) recently released by the ABS. The publication presents information on the supply and use of water in the Australian economy in 2008-09 in both physical (i.e. ML) and monetary terms. The previous release of these data were for the 2004-05 reference year and numerous comparisons between 2004-05 and 2008-09 are made within the publication. The Water Account Australia uses the System of Integrated Environmental and Economic Accounting for Water (SEEA-Water; UN 2006) as the underlying conceptual framework. The SEEA-Water was adopted as an interim international statistical standard in 2007 and represents a specific branch of environmental-economic accounting that evolved from the SEEA (UN 2003a).
The Water Account shows that for NSW:
Household water use and conservation
The ABS has released the latest survey results about water usage and the water conservation practices of Australian households. The publication covers a range of topics including household water sources, water usage, and water saving practices inside and outside the dwelling. The survey showed that of Sydney households living in dwellings which were suitable for having a rainwater tank installed, 16.3% had a rainwater tank in 2010, up from 10% in 2007. Rainwater tank installation for suitable dwellings was higher among households in the Balance of NSW (33% in 2010). Further information can be found in Environmental Issues: Water use and Conservation, March 2010 (cat. no. 4602.0.55.003).
Focus on Arts and Culture
The 2010 release of Arts and Culture in Australia: A Statistical Overview (cat. no. 4172.0) updates a range of data on topics such as funding by government and business, employment and voluntary work and cultural trade. Wherever possible, data are presented to align with the Australian Culture and Leisure Classifications, 2008 (Second Edition) (ACLC) (cat. no. 4902.0). These classifications were developed by the ABS in order to promote a more unified body of statistical information about culture and leisure.
The release also includes four feature articles on aspects of participation in artistic and cultural activities:
Latest update to the National Regional Profile
The National Regional Profiles now uses a Google Maps based interface to make it easier to find information on Local Government Areas and other types of regions across Australia. The latest release also incorporates new datasets, such as tourist accommodation and additional government payments to add to the existing economic and social data on topics such as income, age, occupations, building and agriculture.
Some NSW highlights from the profiles include:
ABS provides resources to aid in the high quality production and use of statistics
There is an increasing emphasis from Australian and international governments on the importance of evidence based decision making in guiding policy processes and the ABS has an important role in helping people and agencies manage data to produce quality information for informed decision-making. The publication A guide for using statistics for evidence based policy, 2010 (cat. no. 1500.0) provides an overview of how statistical information can be used to make well informed policy decisions. Throughout the guide references are made to other resources, relevant training courses and associated frameworks that provide more detail.
A related resource is the information paper Quality Management of Statistical Processes Using Quality Gates (cat. no. 1540.0) which defines Quality Gates and provides an explanation of each of the six components of Quality Gates. This is followed by a discussion of the benefits and lessons from the use of Quality Gates and a demonstration of how they are used by the ABS. In March 2011, the ABS will release a further information paper Quality Management of Statistical Outputs Produced From Administrative Data (cat. no. 1522.0) which describes the management of statistical outputs sourced from administrative data, provides a discussion of the basic principles for the management of quality when using administrative data and will cover risk management strategies such as Quality Gates.
Information Paper: Changes to Managed Funds, Australia to incorporate revised international standards
The ABS compiles a range of financial statistics from surveys conducted by the ABS and from information obtained from regulatory sources. The statistics are important inputs to Australia's national accounts, particularly the financial accounts. The ABS introduced revised international standards for the national accounts in late 2009. The revised international standards were implemented into the Survey of Financial Information (SFI) in 2009 and are now being reflected in the associated publication Managed Funds, Australia (cat. no. 5655.0). This information paper:
The tables presented specify the finest level of detail that can be published, however there may be some aggregation or suppression of the detail in each issue following the application of confidentiality measures. For more information see Information Paper: Changes to Managed Funds, Australia to incorporates revised international standards, 2010 (cat. no. 5655.0.55.002).
Changes to the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use and the Motor Vehicle Census
The ABS recently announced changes to the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use (cat. no. 9208.0). From 31 October 2000 the survey has been conducted annually covering the twelve months ended 31 October, with the last complete survey conducted for the period 12 months ended 31 October 2007. Processing of the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use was discontinued in January 2008 due to budgetary constraints. The survey was recommenced to cover the November 2009 - October 2010 period.
The survey will now be conducted biennially (every two years). In order to improve relevance to users, the time period covered by the survey will be changed from 12 months ending 31 October and will now cover the 12 month period ending 30 June, aligning the period to a financial year. The current survey (with outputs to be released in August 2011) will be the last collection using the existing 12 month time period ending 31 October. The next survey will adopt the new time frame and will commence in July 2011.
The sample used for the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use is taken from the Motor Vehicle Census (cat. no. 9309.0). With the change of reference period for the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use the date for the Motor Vehicle Census will also change; from 31 March to 31 January. The next census date will be brought forward to 31 January 2011 and the output for this census date will be released in September 2011.
Further information can be found in Information Paper: Changes to the Survey of Motor Vehicle Use, 12 months ended 31 Oct 2010 (cat. no. 9208.0.55.006) and Information Paper: Changes to the Motor Vehicle Census date, 31 Mar 2010 (cat. no. 9309.0.55.002).
Trust in ABS statistics
The majority of Australians trust the Australian Bureau of Statistics, a report released on World Statistics Day found. In an effort to provide national and international benchmarks on trust in official statistics, the ABS commissioned a survey to measure the public's trust in the ABS and its statistics. More than nine in ten (92%1) of those surveyed were found to trust or greatly trust the ABS.
“The survey’s results are extremely pleasing” said Mr Brian Pink, the Australian Statistician. “The report shows that the majority of Australians believe the ABS to be a valid and reliable organisation and that the community understand the importance in what the ABS does for Australia.” Mr Pink said. The survey, which was conducted in May and June this year, not only measured Australia’s trust in the ABS, but knowledge in what the ABS does and how the ABS compares to other organisations. 2,379 members of the general public and 137 academics, members of the media and economists around Australia participated in the survey. Results found that participants surveyed were most familiar with Census of Population and Housing. The release of the Community Trust in ABS Statistics Survey coincided with the first World Statistics Day, a day which celebrates the service provided by national and international statistical organisations, and hopes to help strengthen the awareness and trust of the public in official statistics. Full details can be found at Community Trust in ABS Statistics Survey.
Note: (1) This survey was undertaken by an independent consultant using a quota based household sampling methodology. The response rate was 26% and is much lower than the usual level of response that is experienced in surveys conducted by the ABS. The response of this survey is comparable to similar market research studies conducted by commercial survey organisations that are undertaken on a voluntary basis. Given the low response rates, and potential for non-response bias users are advised to interpret the findings with caution.
Demystifying population and migration
The Productivity Commission has released a Research Paper - Population and Migration: Understanding the Numbers - to help demystify population statistics and clarify areas of confusion evident in the recent debate about immigration. Commission chairman, Gary Banks, observed: 'In the recent debate about Australia's population growth many numbers have been cited, drawing on various demographic concepts, but these often seem contradictory or based on only part of the story.'
The paper highlights that net migration to Australia has grown strongly in recent years and is now the major contributor to Australia's population growth. The fastest growing component has been temporary migration, which has also made a material contribution to Australia's long-term population growth. The Commission notes that future population levels are sensitive to even minor variations in fertility, mortality and migration flow and cannot be predicted with accuracy. While demographic projections based on different scenarios are helpful for analysis, they should not be regarded as forecasts of what will eventuate.
The Commission's report outlines some of the possible economic and social effects of immigration and population growth. These effects are diverse, depending on the source and composition of growth, and the context in which it occurs. Some of the key points from the report are:
Australian Social Trends: Fertility, population projections and household mobility
More details on these topics are available in the December edition of Australian Social Trends, 2010 (cat. no. 4102.0).
Work-related injury or illness down, men still at most risk
The number of people experiencing a work-related injury or illness has declined, according to figures released in Work-Related Injuries, Australia, 2009-10 (cat. no. 6324.0). In 2009-10, about 640,700 people (5.3% of the 12 million people employed at some time in the last 12 months) experienced a work-related injury or illness, compared with 690,000 (6.4%) in 2005-06. Overall, of the people who worked at some time in the last 12 months, men were still more likely to experience a work-related injury or illness at 55 per 1,000 men (down from 74 per 1,000 in 2005-06) than women at 51 per 1,000 women (same rate as in 2005-06). More than half of people who experienced a work-related injury or illness were men (56%).
The highest rates of work-related injury or illness were experienced in the 45-49 year age group (74 per 1,000 men and 70 per 1,000 women). However, the decrease in the rates of incidence of work-related injuries were highest for young men. The most commonly reported injuries or illnesses were sprains and strains (30%), followed by chronic joint or muscle conditions (18%), and cuts or open wounds (16%). Around half of the most recent work-related injury or illness were sustained mostly by lifting, pushing or pulling objects (27%) or by hitting or being hit or cut by an object (25%). Around 30% of persons who worked at some time in the last 12 months had not received formal training in occupational health and safety risks in the workplace.
ABS Statistical training in NSW in 2011
The ABS NSW office will be hosting the following training courses in early 2011:
In addition to standard training courses, ABS can develop tailored training courses on demand for groups of interested participants, either at our Training Rooms or on-site.
Further information about our courses and schedule can be found on our website under ABS Training.
To book into an upcoming training course or to enquire about customising a statistical training course for your organisation contact our External Training Coordinator on (02) 9268 4327 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about the ABS' operations and strategic directions
The 2009-10 ABS Annual Report was released in October 2010 and reports on the ABS operations throughout the year. The report key issues for the ABS during 2009-10 such as funding outcomes, investments in technology, issues of long term sustainability related to management and staff capability; supporting the measurement of Council of Australian Government activities, the introduction of the Pensioner and Beneficiary Cost of Living Index and the development of the Australian Health Survey.
The ABS Forward Work Program (FWP) is produced annually provides background information about statistical and non-statistical programs across the ABS, their objectives and the outputs they produce. It includes details of past and current resource usage, and details developments in the work program for each of the statistical and non-statistical programs over the next four years. The FWP covers all programs in the ABS, across Central Office (Canberra) and all eight state and territory regional offices. Further details can be found in Forward Work Program, 2010-11 to 2013-14.
The role of the Australian Statistics Advisory Council is to provide guidance to the Minister and the Australian Statistician on the directions and priorities of official statistics. This includes the improvement, extension and coordination of statistical services provided for public purposes in Australia. The Council met in November 2009 and May 2010 with discussions covering a broad range of topics including: the National Statistical Service; data integration; the ABS work program and resources including international collaboration with other National Statistical Offices; the Australian Health Survey; and preparation for the 2011 Census. Further information can be found in the Australian Statistics Advisory Council Annual Report 2009-10.
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