Statistical Longitudinal Census Dataset
Starting with the 2006 Census, the ABS will initiate a project to increase the usefulness of the Census by combining it with future Censuses and possibly other datasets held by the ABS. This project will see the creation of a Statistical Longitudinal Census Dataset (SLCD) based on a 5% sample of the Census population.
In its existing form, the Census provides a 'snapshot' of Australian people and households once every five years. The creation of the SLCD would provide the means to identify patterns of change in social and economic circumstances, for individuals and households, over time.
Looking at patterns for individuals over time allows the factors that influence particular outcomes to be identified, and appropriate interventions to be developed. For example, where people live during childhood, or industry and occupation in early years in the work force, may predispose people to a particular disease which only becomes apparent decades later. Looking at patterns in the history of people with that disease may indicate effective early interventions.
While the real value of the SLCD would not become apparent for some years, as data from the 5% sample from the 2006 Census are brought together with data from 2011, 2016 and so on, the ABS sees this as an important investment in our future to create a significant national statistical asset.
The SLCD would enable us to study:
The project contains three parts.
- the effects of ageing on households and family arrangements
- how children move from education to the workforce and if they are working in fields related to their educational qualifications
- migration patterns of people from one Census to another
- socioeconomic mobility of people from different areas.
1. The central feature of the project is the creation of a Statistical Longitudinal Census Dataset (SLCD). The SLCD will be based on a 5% sample of the population. Records for this sample group will be brought together from each Census by statistical techniques which do not involve the use of name and address.
2. Using the same statistical techniques, the dataset will be used with other non ABS datasets for approved statistical projects. The other datasets being considered are: birth and death register data, long-term immigration data, and national disease registers.
3. During the period of Census processing, name and address information will be used to bring together Census data and other selected datasets for ABS quality studies. Once Census processing is completed, all name and address information held by the ABS will be destroyed.