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A MESSAGE FROM THE REGIONAL DIRECTOR
KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH OUR HOUSING AND MIGRANT STATISTICS USERS
Over the past month or so the ABS has held consultations with providers and users of statistics about Housing and Migrants. Valuable feedback was provided by representatives from a range of ACT government agencies, community organisation and business groups who participated in a Housing workshop on June 4. The workshop participants provided input to identify the key policy and research issues for the ACT and the current and future data needs. The ACT was the first of the state and territory jurisdictions in Australia to hold a workshop.
On 20 May representatives from the ABS National Migrant Statistics Unit presented a short session to interested ACT government agencies on migrant statistics. They talked about what data is available on migrant statistics and how this is being brought together on the ABS website, the collaborative development work being undertaken and the current and emerging policy issues with respect to migrants and ethnicity.
OUR NEW PUBLICATION
In issue no. 46 of ABStract I announced the last issue of ACT in Focus, (cat. no. 1307.8), the flagship ACT publication. On May 22 the first issue of our new publication In fACT: Statistical Information on the ACT and Region, (cat. no. 1308.8) was released. This electronic only publication is up on the ABS website and we welcome any comments on our new look publication.
CHANGES TO ABS SURVEYS IN 2008-09
Finally, in the previous edition of this newsletter I mentioned the 2008-09 ABS financial constraints. A full listing of affected surveys, statistical collections and publications can be found on the ABS website.
ACT Regional Director
In fACT … A FACT OF LIFE for the ACT
In fACT is an electronic magazine containing an overview of key economic, social and environment indicators for the Australian Capital Territory.
At present, the principal source of statistics come from collections conducted by the ABS. In addition, a substantial amount of information, both descriptive and statistical, is sourced from other agencies, such as ACT government, industry bodies and other statistical agencies. This comprehensive product utilises the ABS website’s on-line facility to present users with the latest topical information. Summary information about the ACT and Region relating to various topics is also included.
The first issue was released on the 22nd May 2008 and will, over time, build a comprehensive collection of statistical information. As data becomes available regular updates will occur with input on a quarterly basis during the months of May, August, November and February.
Another feature of the product is the inclusion of feature articles relating to current topics about the region.
In fACT is available free of charge on the ABS website.
AND THE WINNER WAS!
On the 11th of February 2008 the ACT Regional office announced a competition to name our new publication. The new publication replaces the current ACT in Focus (cat. no. 1307.8); ACT and Region (cat. no. 1381.8) and ACT Stats (cat. no. 1344.8.55.001). The competition was open to all ABS staff. Just under 100 entries were received and the name the judges chose was: "In fACT - Statistical Information on the ACT and Region" (cat. no. 1308.8). Congratulations to Angela Vivian Bolt for submitting the winning entry.
On Monday the 5th of May the Deputy Australian Statistician, Ian Ewing presented Angela with her prize.
The NatStats Conference08 will be held at the Crown Promenade, Melbourne from 19 - 21 November 2008.
Pre-program registration for the conference is NOW OPEN!
The conference program has been designed with policy and decision makers in mind. Senior staff from policy departments, academia and the private sector, as well as overseas speakers are being invited to help elevate thinking to a national perspective. The conference will be divided into three main themes: Informing the Nation; Measuring the Progress of Society and Informing the Environment Debate. There will also be a showcase session that will demonstrate Information Platforms and state planning initiatives.
Participating in NatStats08 will provide you with the opportunity to:
Connect with the statistical community on the issues and challenges in creating a culture of evidence-based decision making.
Share your experiences and raise awareness of the significant issues within your field.
Network with policy makers from across government, industry, academia and the community.
The NatStats08 website, http://www.nss.gov.au/natstats , is your one-stop-shop for all your NatStats08 needs. From the website you will be able to register for the conference, download our sponsorship and exhibition document, be informed of all the latest program and social events.
If you would like to talk about the conference program please call Mark Lound on
(02) 6252 6325 or email him at email@example.com.
To register your interest in the conference please contact Conference Solutions on firstname.lastname@example.org.
INFORMATION AND ITS USE IN SOCIETY.
In many fields such as politics, economics, environment and entertainment, information is relied upon to help make decisions or recommendations.
Australians regularly provide the ABS with information about their working life; how and where they live; family and family structures; what they spend their money on; and their hobbies or recreational activities. This wealth of information enables us to put together a picture of Australia.
The 2006 Census of Population and Housing is one of many sources of data produced by the ABS. The many questions asked in the Census can be cross-classified and cross-tabulated to produce a myriad of information.
Four examples of how census data has been used by organisations to demonstrate the power of information.
WHERE ARE THE CHILDREN?
A community service organisation facilitated a workshop to identify issues and potential solutions on the sustainability, access and barriers to social inclusion of zero to 5 year olds and their families. To achieve their stated objectives the client requested data that could point to households in the study area experiencing 'social isolation', and therefore possibly not being included in community service activities. The data supplied provided information on the number of zero to 5 year olds, and their families, in a cluster of capital city suburbs. The data was cross-classified by household income, place of birth (Australia/overseas) and attendance or non-attendance at preschool.
It was identified that the number of children not attending preschool was higher than previously thought. The data was discussed at a workshop and the attendees were able to identify solutions to combat this development. ABS representatives attended the workshop and observed the direct link between ABS data and the decision making process.
INFLUENCING GOVERNMENT POLICY
A research organisation requested information relating to remote Indigenous communities, their housing composition and Indigenous migration into and out of remote Australia. The client was measuring change between the 2001 and 2006 Census counts. From the data, the client was able to make significant observations relating to Indigenous overcrowding in remote areas, housing tenure and housing utilisation.
The client has reported that the conclusions from the study have already had a direct influence on state and federal government policy on Indigenous related issues.
WHERE ARE OUR WORKERS?
An organisation, with concerns about skills shortage, requested data on the number of people who had formal qualifications in a range of fields of study and were working in occupations outside that field of study. The data was cross-classified by age, sex labour force status and income. As an example the data showed that in the health related industry only two thirds of persons qualified worked in the industry.
By examining the characteristics of the people who worked outside their field of study the organisation was in a better position to identify potential sources of employees with relevant skills.
WHERE WE LIVE AND WORK
A research organisation requested data on the working population who lived outside the ACT and worked in the ACT. This data was complemented by providing data on the ACT working population who lived in the ACT and worked outside the ACT. This information was used to complete a study on cross-border activity.
NEED MORE INFORMATION?
Whether you are developing a policy for government, operating a private business or conducting research, we have information to help you. You can find out more about the ABS Information Consultancy service in the brochure, Information Consultancy Services, 2007 (cat. no. 9920.0).
This brochure provides information and examples about how demographic, census, social, international trade and economic data can be customised to meet your needs and help you make better informed decisions.
To find out more, contact us via the National Information Referral Service (NIRS) on
1300 135 070, or email email@example.com. Opening times for NIRS are: 9:00 am to 4:30 pm.
THE ABS SERVICE DELIVERY CHARTER
The new ABS Service Delivery Charter: Informing Decisions - Australian Bureau of Statistics Service Delivery Charter 2008-2011was released on 24 January 2008.
The charter outlines our commitment to providing quality customer service and specifies what our customers can expect when they approach us for statistical or other information through any of our service channels.
In addition to information about the ways in which we can assist our customers in making informed decisions, the charter also includes a range of performance indicators for which we are accountable. We will report on our performance against these measures in the ABS Annual Report.
The charter was developed through a process of consultation with ABS clients, customers and staff, and will be reviewed in 2010.
An electronic version of the charter can be found on the ‘About Us’ page of the ABS website.
POPULATION CHARACTERISTICS, ABORIGINAL AND TORRES STRAIT ISLANDER AUSTRALIANS, AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY
The electronic tables from Population Characteristics, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, ACT,2006 (cat. no. 4713.8.55.001) were released on 27 March, they present information on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders for the Australian Capital Territory based on the 2006 Census. They complement the information presented in the national publication Population Characteristics of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians (cat. no. 4713.0). Topics covered in the national report and sets of tables for Australia and each state/territory include: the demographic and geographic distribution of the population and its growth in recent years; mobility; household composition; language and religion; education; work; income; housing; transport and need for assistance.
Some key characteristics of the Indigenous population in the ACT are listed below.
HOUSEHOLD PREPAREDNESS FOR EMERGENCIES, NSW, Vic., Qld AND ACT, OCTOBER 2007
The first issue of Household Preparedness for Emergencies, NSW, Vic., Qld and ACT, October 2007 (cat. no. 4818.0.55.001) was released on 6 June 2008. The survey examined the steps households had taken in preparedness for emergencies. Where households had experienced a recent emergency (in the last 2 years) the survey investigated how they responded during the emergency and if any changes were made to ensure better preparedness in the future.
Some ACT highlights include:
The publication is available for free of charge on the ABS website. For further information contact the NIRS on 1300 135 070 or via email firstname.lastname@example.org.
BARRIERS AND INCENTIVES TO LABOUR FORCE PARTICIPATION
In 2006–07 there were 1.7 million adult Australians who said they wanted to play a greater part in the labour force, but couldn't for a variety of reasons. The vast majority (1.4 million) of these people were not employed but wanted a job. A smaller number of people (273,000) who usually worked less than 16 hours a week wanted to work more hours.
The latest results from the Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation topic of the Multi-Purpose Household Survey were released on December 19, 2007. The populations of interest are people aged 18 years and over who are either not employed or who usually worked less than 16 hours. The data collected provides information on this potential labour force and their characteristics. Data from this survey are used to obtain a better understanding of the factors that influence people to participate (more) in the labour force and the hours they work. By identifying the barriers that people face in joining the labour force or in working greater hours, a range of incentives to increase labour force participation and hours worked may then be identified.
Summary information is presented in the Barriers and Incentives to Labour Force Participation, Australia, Jul 2006 to Jun 2007 (cat. no. 6239.0). Details about the data items available from the Barriers and Incentives topic are available on the ABS website. They are available in an excel spreadsheet, as a data cube (Appendix – RRI/BI 2006–07 Populations and Data Items List). For further information about this topic, please contact Tracey Chester on Canberra (02) 6252 5609 or email <email@example.com>.
RETIREMENT AND RETIREMENT INTENTIONS
In 2006–07, there were 3.2 million people (aged 45 years and over) in the labour force who intend to retire at some time in the future. 'Financial security' was the most common factor for influencing people's decision about when they intended to retire (44% of men and 41% of women).
The latest results from the Retirement and Retirement Intentions topic of the Multi-Purpose Household Survey were released on January 22, 2008. The data collected in the topic provides information on retirement trends, the factors which influence decisions to retire, and the income arrangements that retirees and potential retirees have made to provide for their retirement. The data are cross-classified by a range of demographic characteristics such as age, sex, marital status and country of birth, as well as labour force characteristics.
Summary information is presented in the Retirement and Retirement Intentions, Australia, Jul 2006 to Jun 2007 (cat. no. 6238.0). Details about the data items available from the Retirement and Retirement Intentions topic are available on the ABS website. They are available in an excel spreadsheet, as a data cube (Appendix – RRI/BI 2006–07 Populations and Data Items List). For further information about this topic, please contact Tracey Chester on Canberra (02) 6252 5609 or email <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
In September 2007, just over half a million Australian workers preferred and were available to work more hours. These underemployed workers accounted for 4.7% of the total workforce.
The latest results from the Underemployed Workers Survey were released on February 25, 2008. Underemployed workers are part-time workers who want and are available for more hours of work than they currently have and full-time workers who worked part-time hours during the reference week for economic reasons. Information collected in the survey includes whether they were available to start work with more hours, whether they were looking for work with more hours, and their experience in looking for work with more hours. Other information includes the duration of the current period of insufficient work and the number of extra hours preferred.
Summary information is presented in the Underemployed Workers, Australia, September 2007 (cat. no. 6220.0). Appendix 2 in the publication presents the range of data available on request from the survey. For further information about this survey, please contact Deepa Wright on Canberra (02) 6252 6149 or email <email@example.com>.
PERSONS NOT IN THE LABOUR FORCE
In September 2007, 5.5 million Australians were not in the labour force. This represented a third of Australia's civilian population aged 15 years and over.
The latest results from the Persons Not in the Labour Force Survey were released on March 25, 2008. Information collected in the survey includes details about whether people not in the labour force wanted to work, reasons why they were not actively looking for work, or were not available for work, and their main activity while not in the labour force.
Summary information is presented in the Persons Not in the Labour Force, Australia, September 2007 (cat. no. 6220.0). Appendix 1 in the publication presents the range of data available on request from the survey. For further information about this survey, please contact Tracey Chester on Canberra (02) 6252 5609 or email <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
SURVEY OF EMPLOYMENT ARRANGEMENTS, RETIREMENT AND SUPERANNUATION
The Survey of Employment Arrangements, Retirement and Superannuation 2007 (SEARS 07) is a household survey of people aged 15 years and above. The SEARS 07 was enumerated from 2 April to 7 July 2007, using face-to-face personal interviews (computer assisted). The survey has a sample size of approximately 13,300 fully responding households (about 26,600 people) from all states and territories.
The SEARS 07 provides information on four broad topics: Employment Arrangements, Work and Family Balance, Retirement, and Superannuation. It includes standard demographic, socioeconomic and geographic items and a range of data items relating to the core topics:
The first data from this survey will be released in the second half of 2008 in the form of a publication and accompanying spreadsheet tables. A Confidentialised Unit Record File (CURF) will also be available from this survey. For further information about this release please contact Evelyne Degryse on Canberra (02) 6252 7822 or email <email@example.com>.
EXPECTED MAJOR ANNUAL & IRREGULAR RELEASES
Australian Bureau of Statistics - Annual Report, 2007-08 (October)
Australian Statistics Advisory Council - Annual Report, 2007-08 (October)
Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC), July 2008 (September)
Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Concordances, 01 July 2008 (September)
Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) Electronic Structures, 01 July 2008 (September)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC) 2008 (September)
Vineyards Estimates, Australia, Preliminary, 2007-08 (October)
Perspectives on Regional Australia: Wealth throughout Australia, 2005-06 (August)
Perspectives on Regional Australia: Population Turnover, 2006 Census (August)
Measures of Australia's Progress: Summary Indicators, 2008 (Edition 2) (August)
CENSUS OF POPULATION AND HOUSING
Census of Population and Housing: Older Persons, Australia, 2006 (August)
Census of Population and Housing: Estimated Resident Population Profile Datapack, 2006 (August)
A Picture of the Nation: the Statistician's Report on the 2006 Census, 2006 (August)
Australian Historical Population Statistics, 2008 (August)
Information Paper: calculating Experimental Life tables for Use in Population Estimates and Projections of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians, 2001 to 2006 (October)
Population Projections, Australia, 2006 to 2101 (September)
Population by Age and Sex, Regions of Australia, 2007 (August)
Births, Australia, 2007 (October)
Marriages, Australia, 2007 (September)
Divorces, Australia, 2007 (August)
Migrant Data Matrices, 2008 (November)
Sports and Physical Recreation: A Statistical Overview, Australia, 2008 (Edition 2), (October)
Arts and Culture in Australia: A Statistical Overview, 2008 (second edition), (October)
Cultural Funding by Government, Australia, 2006 to 2007 (August)
Information Paper: Measuring Learning in Australia: A Profile of Participation Outcomes, June 2006 (October)
Mental Health and Wellbeing: Profile of Adults, Australia, 2008 (August)
National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing of Adults: User's Guide, 2008 (September)
A Profile of carers in Australia, 2007 (October)
Statistical Framework for Family and Domestic Violence, 2008 (October)
An Experimental Monetary Water Account for Australia, 2004-05 (August)
Water Use on Australian Farms, 2006-07 (August)
Climate and Australian Farms, 2006-07 (September)
NATIONAL ACCOUNTS, INTERNATIONAL TRADE AND FINANCE
Australian National Accounts: State Accounts, 2007-08 (November)
Government Financial Estimates, Australia, 2008-09 (September)
Australian Farming in Brief, 2008 (September)
LABOUR STATISTICS AND PRICES
Labour Mobility, Australia, February 2008 (August)
Employment Arrangements, Retirement and Superannuation, Australia, April to July 2007 (September)
Analytical Living Cost Indexes for Selected Australian Household Types, June 2008 (August)
SECONDARY INCOME AND DISTRIBUTION
Research and Experimental Development, Businesses, Australia, 2006-07 (September)
Research and Experimental Development, All Sector Summary, Australia, 2006-07 (September)
Information and Communication Technology, Australia, 2006-07 (October)
Australian Industry, 2006-07 (September)
Innovation in Australian Business, 2006-07 (August)
Selected Characteristics of Australian Business, 2006-07 (September)
Manufacturing Industry, Australia, 2006-07 (August)
Mining Operations, Australia, 2006-07 (August)
Survey of Motor Vehicle Use, Australia, 01 November 2006 to 31 October 2007 (September)
Survey of Motor Vehicle Use: Data Cubes, Australia, 01 November 2006 to 31 October 2007 (September)
Motor Vehicle Census, Australia, 31 March 2008 (November)
STATISTICAL TRAINING COURSES AVAILABLE IN CANBERRA 2008
Each ABS office offers practical, informative and relevant training to help you develop your statistical skills. These courses may also be tailored to suit your needs or additional programs can be developed as required.
ANALYSING SURVEY DATA MADE SIMPLEOverview
This two-day computer-based course develops practical skills in basic statistical and graphical data analysis techniques using Microsoft Excel. It aims to equip participants with the skills to:
Is this course for me?
This course is designed for people with limited training and exposure to statistical analysis who need to learn how to analyse and describe data that have been collected in surveys. A mathematical background is beneficial but not essential. Previous experience using spreadsheets is recommended.
7 – 8 August 2008
20 – 21 October 2008
$750 (inc. GST) per person
MAKING QUALITY INFORMED DECISIONSOverview
Need to introduce some quality into your statistical decision making? This one-day course introduces the concept of 'holistic quality' through the use of a data quality framework. The framework ensures that users of statistics are able to assess whether the statistics are fit for their intended use. This course will provide participants with an increased understanding of:
This course would be useful for anyone who uses statistics in decision making, or is involved in producing statistics and wants to ensure that statistics are used appropriately.
29 October 2008
$450 (inc. GST) per person
Principles of Questionnaire Design
This two-day course aims to enable participants to understand and apply the basic techniques used in developing a survey questionnaire. The course will include facilitated exercises to give participants an understanding of how to design and evaluate a questionnaire. The course content covers:
Is this course for me?
This course would be useful for anyone who needs to design a questionnaire that will collect information accurately and concisely.
23 – 24 September 2008
$750 (inc. GST) per person
TURNING DATA INTO INFORMATIONOverview
This two-day course is intended to provide skills in interpreting, communicating and displaying data clearly and effectively. Participants will gain skills in transforming data into meaningful written information, particularly in respect to social policy issues. At the completion of this course participants will be able to:
Is this course for me?
This course will be most beneficial to people who need to use data to produce reports or social commentary, or people who are involved with monitoring and evaluation in a social context.
12 – 13 August 2008
17 – 18 November 2008
$750 (inc. GST) per person
For more information about course content, available dates for these courses in other capital cities around Australia, or details of how we may be able to tailor or offer a course to meet your specific needs:
Ph: (02) 6252 8900
Or visit the ABS website under ‘Services we provide’ then ‘ABS Training’, for further information about external training with ABS.
CANBERRA 2008 COURSE REGISTRATION FORM
Please tick below the course(s) you wish to attend.
Analysing Survey Data Made Simple
Making Quality Informed Decisions
Turning Data Into Information
Principles of Questionnaire Design
Name: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Your booking will be confirmed upon receipt of your registration form. If you have not received confirmation of enrolment within 2 working days, please call (02) 6252 8900.
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