1216.0.55.005 - Review outcomes for Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS), 2020  
Latest ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 16/09/2020  First Issue
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Directions for 2021

Classification name
In 2021, the ASGS will be re-named Australian Statistical Geography Standard – Edition 3 (ASGS Ed. 3). Until this point, the ASGS has been named according to the Census year it referred to. This has led to confusion as the whole ASGS is published across several years. For example, volume 4 of ASGS 2016 was published in 2017.

Release schedule
The ASGS will be progressively released from July 2021 onwards. This timing reflects the availability of the different data inputs required to produce each classification.


Section of ASGSExpected release

Main StructureJuly 2021
Indigenous StructureSeptember 2021
Non ABS StructuresSeptember 2021
Significant Urban Areas, Urban Centres and Localities, Section of StateLate 2022
Remoteness StructureEarly 2023


Experimental releaseExpected publication date

UCLs and Remoteness AreasTBA


Geocentric Datum of Australia 2020
ASGS Ed. 3 digital boundaries will use the Geocentric Datum of Australia 2020 (GDA2020), replacing GDA94. Adopting GDA2020 increases the accuracy of the ASGS. In 2020, the coordinates of any given point on the ground will differ by 1.8 meters between GDA2020 and GDA94. GDA2020 was adopted as the new official national datum in 2017 and has since been implemented gradually by organisations across Australia.

For more information about GDA2020, please refer to the Intergovernmental Committee on Surveying and Mapping or Geoscience Australia.

Access to digital boundaries and correspondences
ASGS Ed. 3 digital boundaries and correspondences will be available for download from the ABS website in ESRI Shapefile and GeoPackage formats. The ABS no longer release boundaries in MapInfo TAB or MapInfo midmif formats. Once published, ASGS Ed. 3 digital boundaries will also be available on data.gov.au in GeoPackage format. Currently, all historical ASGC and ASGS boundaries from 1981 to 2016, as well as correspondences, allocation files and coding indexes, are also available in this location.

Correspondences continue to be a critical piece of geospatial analytical infrastructure for our customers. Sometimes called concordances, they allow users to transform data between different geographic regions. There are a wide range of correspondences available on both the ABS website and data.gov.au. Updated correspondences will be provided to accompany ASGS Ed. 3 boundaries as they are released. Correspondences are increasingly available in a machine-readable CSV format and the ABS is continuing to explore new methods of making correspondences more readily accessible and user friendly.

Access to data
2021 Census of Population and Housing data will be released on ASGS Ed. 3 geographies via the ABS website and 2021 Census products and services. More details relating to Census products and services will be released on the ABS website closer to the 2021 Census. Other ABS data will move to ASGS Ed. 3 from July 2021 onwards.


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