Get ready to get digital with the 2016 Census

   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All
09 August 2015

Get ready to get digital with the 2016 Census

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today welcomed the Australian Government’s announcement that the 2016 Census of Population and Housing will be held on Tuesday 9 August 2016.

With exactly one year to go until Australia’s 17th national Census, Australian Statistician David Kalisch said the ABS is making exciting changes to the way the Census is conducted in 2016.

“The 2016 Census will be the first Census in Australia’s history where we expect more people to complete online than on paper,” Mr Kalisch said.

“Over the past 100 years we have moved from using mechanical adding machines and calculators, and Census collectors travelling on horse or camel back, to transforming our Census operations in 2016 to take advantage of today’s digital world and connect with citizens in their online environments.

“Online login codes will be posted to the majority of households, replacing hand delivery and collection of forms by Census field staff.

“These new delivery and collection procedures aim to increase online participation, make the Census easier for households, and reduce costs for the taxpayer.

“We anticipate that more than 65 per cent of households will complete the Census online in 2016, positioning Australia as a world leader,” he said.

Mr Kalisch encouraged all Australians to take advantage of the fast, easy and secure online option when they participate on 9 August next year, and assured those who cannot join the expected 15-million strong crowd going digital in 2016 that paper forms will also be available.

“We need the support of everyone in Australia on Census night to make the Census a success and provide the information that Australia requires,” Mr Kalisch said.

“The Census provides an important statistical snapshot of our nation, producing high quality small area and population data. We need everyone to be in that picture.”

The ABS uses Census data, along with other data such as information from the Registrars of Births, Deaths and Marriages and Department of Immigration and Border Protection data, as the basis for official population estimates, including annual regional population estimates.

These estimates are used for electoral purposes and to support the allocation of funding for services and infrastructure used in all communities, including housing, transport, education, industry, hospitals and the environment.

For more Census information, visit the ABS website at