Essential Statistical Assets for Australia - Commencement of Consultation Period

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29 May, 2012


ABS asks – what information counts most?

The Australian Bureau of Statistics today launched an initiative which will identify the most essential statistical assets for decision making in Australia. As part of the ABS's work in advancing Australia's National Statistical Service, a consultation paper and preliminary list were released today, outlining those statistics and datasets likely to be the nation's most critical.

"Essential Statistical Assets are a sub-set of official statistical assets that, due to their role and importance, should be given priority for ensuring their high quality and integrity" said Peter Harper, Deputy Statistician of the ABS.

The aim of the initiative is to separately identify a core subset of statistical assets from the broad range of important official statistics generated by government . These essential statistical assets would have the broadest and most critical application and should be an investment priority as they yield the greatest benefit for Australia. This is even more crucial in the current environment of shrinking real resources available for governments.

The ABS has developed a preliminary list to provide a springboard for consultation, debate and discussion.

"The ABS is seeking opinions from the public and from data users across the statistical community as well as agencies that have been identified on the preliminary list. The preliminary list is only a starting point - we want to hear what others have to say." Mr Harper said.

Those statistics on the preliminary list were included because they are: critical for public policy or service delivery; important to key national progress measurement; required to meet domestic or legislative requirements; or required for international reporting obligations.

A consultation paper and the preliminary list can be found on the National Statistical Service website along with other information on how you can participate in the discussion.

Visit the ESA homepage for further information at