Australian citizenship (CITP)

Latest release
Census of Population and Housing: Census dictionary
Reference period


This variable records whether a person has Australian citizenship. The data is used to understand the tendency of different migrant groups to take up citizenship and to measure the size of the groups eligible to vote.


All persons


1Australian citizen
2Not an Australian citizen
&Not stated
VOverseas visitor

Number of categories: 4 

See Understanding supplementary codes for more information.

Question(s) from the Census form

Is the person an Australian citizen?

Is the person an Australian citizen?
Is Person 1 an Australian citizen? If the person holds dual citizenship and one is Australian, select ‘Yes, Australian citizen’. Person's Australian citizenship Yes, Australian citizen No

How this variable is created

This variable is created from responses to the Australian citizen question. The responses are captured automatically from mark box responses so the risk of processing error is minimal. Respondents are asked to mark only one response. When respondents provide more than one, responses are accepted in the order they appeared on the form and the extra response is rejected.

History and changes

A question on national citizenship has been asked on every Census since 1911. However, prior to 1986 the specific question wording asked to specify country of citizenship or their 'nationality' rather than ask if they were an Australian citizen.

For 2021 the category labels have been updated:

  • Category 1 has changed from 'Australian' to 'Australian citizen'
  • Category 2 has changed from 'Not Australian' to 'Not an Australian citizen'

Data use considerations

Australian citizenship (CITP) data is useful when cross-classified with Country of birth of person (BPLP), Year of arrival in Australia (YARP) and Age (AGEP) data. When analysing Australian citizenship data cross-classified with Country of birth of person data, users may find that a small proportion of people have responded to the citizenship question as Australian citizen, but not a country of birth and vice versa. 

The non-response rate for Australian citizenship (CITP) was 5.1% in 2021. This is a decrease from 6.9% in 2016.

Related variables and glossary terms

  • Age (AGEP)
  • County of birth of person (BPLP)
  • Year of arrival in Australia (YARP)
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