2901.0 - Census Dictionary, 2011  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 23/05/2011   
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2011 Census Dictionary >> Glossary >> Digital boundaries

Digital boundaries

The 2011 Census digital boundaries facilitate the analysis and display of 2011 Census statistical data through their use in various software packages. Statistical data from other ABS collections, or from other sources, can be used in conjunction with these boundaries.

ASGS boundaries have been constructed and maintained using the authoritative spatial data supplied by the Public Sector Mapping Agencies (PSMA) Australia Ltd. The data quality and spatial accuracy of these boundaries are closely linked to the digital base map upon which they were based. They do not necessarily align with any other digital base maps.

When using these boundaries, users should be aware that, as a result of limitations of scale and accuracy of the original base map, they are not exact in area and extent. They therefore should not be used for highly detailed spatial analysis involving attributes that are highly dependent on area and extent factors.

The 2011 PSMA national topographic datasets and 2011 Census boundaries are compatible with Geocentric Datum Australia (GDA94).

Dissemination of boundaries: The ABS provides boundaries in Mapinfo interchange format (.mid .mif) and ESRI Shape file format.

Statistical data for use in conjunction with the 2011 Census digital boundaries can be obtained from ABS Information Consultancy.

Use with alternative digital base maps: The 2011 Census boundaries may be used in conjunction with base map data other than the recommended PSMA base map, however, alignment of boundaries to these alternative base maps cannot be assumed. If the alternative base map is not derived from the same digitising source then the points defining each of the corresponding features is different and the boundaries will not align perfectly.

The original PSMA base map is spatially accurate to different tolerances in urban and rural areas. If an alternative base map has different spatial accuracy characteristics, then the boundaries cannot be expected to align.

The GDA94 datum used for both Census boundaries and the PSMA base map is compatible with the Global Positioning System (GPS). However, GPS satellite positions may be spatially less accurate than the boundaries in urban areas and more accurate than the boundaries in remote areas. Care should therefore be taken when combining features mapped by GPS with Census boundaries.

Copyright on boundaries: The copyright and intellectual property rights for the 2011 Census digital boundaries are retained solely by the Commonwealth of Australia and are administered by the ABS. Census data and digital boundaries are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Australia licence. Please see the Australian Bureau of Statistics website copyright statement for further details.

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