2015.8 - Census of Population and Housing: Selected Social and Housing Characteristics for Statistical Local Areas, Australian Capital Territory, 2001  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 12/09/2002   
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This publication presents a range of social and housing statistics produced from the 2001 Census of Population and Housing for the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). For comparative purposes, it includes 1996 Census data presented on 2001 Census geography. In addition, selected 1901 Census data are included for each State in table 1 to mark Australia's Centenary of Federation in 2001. 1901 data for the ACT are included in New South Wales as it was not established as a separate entity until 1911. The tables in this publication provide selected characteristics of the population and their housing arrangements for Statistical Divisions(SDs), Statistical Subdivisions (SSDs) and Statistical Local Areas (SLAs). The purpose of these tables is to allow a broad comparison of characteristics between geographic areas. This publication also contains the Basic Community Profile (BCP) for the ACT. This set of tables is provided to illustrate the wide range of data available from the Census. The BCP consists of 33 tables. This publication contains the first 21 tables which focus on the social and housing characteristics. The remainder of the BCP, tables 22 to 33, will be published in Census of Population and Housing: Selected Education and Labour Force Characteristics for Statistical Local Areas, Australian Capital Territory (Cat. no. 2017.8). The statistics in this publication are mostly presented on the basis of where people were counted on Census Night ('as enumerated' counts). Counts of people based on where they usually live ('usual residence' counts) are also provided.


Census counts should not be confused with the Australian Bureau of Statistics' (ABS) official population estimate, the Estimated Resident Population (ERP) which is used for electoral purposes and in assisting in the distribution of government funds to state and local governments. ERP is the definitive population estimate and is derived from the census counts. For example, ERP includes an estimate of Australians temporarily overseas. For a fuller description of population measures and the derivation of ERP, please see paragraphs 7, 8 and 9 of the Explanatory Notes. Appendix 1 includes a table showing census counts and ERP for each State and Territory. One of the important features of the Census is that it describes the characteristics of Australia's population and housing for small geographic areas and small population groups. While not available in this publication, data at the smallest geographic level Collection District (CD) are available in a range of census products. For more information on these products, please refer to Appendix 2 - Census Products and Services. Concepts and definitions used in this publication are explained in the Glossary and more detailed information is available in the 2001 Census Dictionary (Cat. no. 2901.0). The Explanatory Notes in this publication provide a discussion of the scope and coverage of the Census, the different measures of population, and the limitations of census data. This publication is one of a series of publications which provide data at the SLA level for each State and Territory. A similar publication is also available for the whole of Australia, providing data at SSD level. See Appendix 2 (Census Products and Services) for more information.



The Census of Population and Housing conducted on 7 August 2001 counted 311,947 people in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) on Census Night. This represents an increase of 4.2% (12,704 people) since the 1996 Census (299,243 people). Of those counted in Australia on Census Night, 309,998 people were usual residents of the ACT.

Selected person characteristics

The median age in the ACT was 32 years in 2001 compared with 30 years in 1996. This compares with 35 years for Australia as a whole in 2001. The proportion of people aged 65 years and over increased to 8.3% (25,820 people) in 2001, from 7.1% in 1996. The proportion of people aged 0-14 years decreased to 21.1% (65,872 people) in 2001, from 22.6% in 1996. The proportion of males and females in the population has remained stable, with more females (50.8%) than males (49.2%). New topics for the 2001 Census included Computer use at home and Internet use. For the ACT a higher proportion of males (60.1%) used a personal computer at home than females (53.4%). This compares with 43.5% of males and 40.5% of females for Australia as a whole. Similarly, a higher proportion of males (43.4%) than females (36.4%) used the Internet at home in the ACT, compared with 29.5% (males) and 25.9% (females) for Australia. The ACT has the highest rate of Internet use at home of all States and Territories.

Selected ethnic characteristics

The majority of people counted in the ACT were Australian born (73.9% or 228,363 people). This compares with 72.6% for Australia. The largest overseas born group comprised people born in the United Kingdom at 5.5% (16,999 people) followed by New Zealand at 1.3% (3,971people). English was the only language spoken at home by 82.4% (254,839 people) of the population, compared with 80.0% for Australia. Of those people who spoke a language other than English at home, the highest proportion spoke Chinese languages (1.6% or 4,933 people), followed by Italian (1.2% or 3,713 people).

Indigenous people

The number of people who identified as being of Indigenous origin increased by 23.4% to 3,576 people in 2001, up from 2,899 people in 1996. This was the largest percentage increase of all States and Territories. The Indigenous population represented 1.2% of the ACT population. This compares with 2.2% for Australia.

Housing characteristics

There were 121,974 dwellings counted in the ACT, an increase of 6.5% (7,404 dwellings) since 1996. Of these dwellings, 94.2% (114,842) were occupied private dwellings, 5.7% (6,908) were unoccupied private dwellings and 0.2% (224) were non-private dwellings.

Occupied private dwellings

Dwellings which were fully owned or being purchased accounted for 66.6% of the 114,842 occupied private dwellings in the ACT. For the occupied private dwellings being purchased (38,405 dwellings), the median monthly housing loan repayment was $957. The median weekly rent for the 28.0% of occupied private dwellings being rented 32,212 dwellings) was $169.

Household characteristics

Of the 114,842 households counted in 2001, 69.3% (79,612 households) were family households, a decrease from 71.1% in 1996. The proportion of lone person households increased to 22.2% (25,516 households), up from 21.0% in 1996. The proportion of group households fell to 4.5% (5,223 households) in 2001, down from 5.6% in 1996. The Census shows that 64.4% of all ACT households (73,974 households) used a personal computer at home in the week prior to the Census. This compares with 48.6% of all households for Australia. For the same period, half of all households 50.3% or 57,769 households) reported using the Internet at home, compared with 36.1% for Australia.

Family type

The 2001 Census counted 80,328 families in ACT, an increase of 5.2% since 1996. In 2001 almost half (49.0% or 39,326 families) of all families were couples with children, down from 52.6% in 1996. There were corresponding increases in the proportion of couple families without children (33.9%), up from 30.7% in 1996, and one parent families (15.6%), up from 15.1% in 1996.