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Indigenous Areas

Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) Edition 3
Reference period
July 2021 - June 2026

Indigenous Areas (IAREs) are medium sized geographic areas built from whole Indigenous Locations. They are designed for the release and analysis of more detailed statistics for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Whole Indigenous Areas aggregate to form Indigenous Regions.

There are 431 Indigenous Areas covering the whole of Australia without gaps or overlaps. This incorporates 19 non-spatial special purpose codes including a new Outside Australia code; more information on these can found in the special purpose codes section.

The Other Territories of Jervis Bay, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, Christmas Island and Norfolk Island are each represented by individual Indigenous Areas.

IARE design criteria

Indigenous Areas represent larger populations and areas than Indigenous Locations, allowing the release of more detailed population and economic statistics. Changes to Indigenous Areas are determined through consultation with the Centre for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Statistics based on statistical and community requirements.

IARE name criteria

The key criteria for Indigenous Area names are that they be:

  • meaningful
  • have a maximum of 50 characters
  • unique, that is not shared by any other Indigenous Area in Australia.

Indigenous Areas are named according to the areas they represent.

  • Where an Indigenous Area represents a well-known community it is named after that community, for example 709012 Urapuntja.
  • Where an Indigenous Area represents more than 1 community it is named with a combination of up to three distinct community names, for example 709005 Atitjere - Akarnenehe – Engawala.
  • Where an Indigenous Area represents a broader region, excluding a specific Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community this is reflected in the name, for example 708001 Alice exc. Town Camps.

IARE coding structure

Indigenous Areas are identified by six-digit hierarchical codes consisting of a one-digit State or Territory identifier, followed by a two-digit Indigenous Region identifier and a three-digit Indigenous Area identifier, as shown below. Within each Indigenous Region, Indigenous Area identifiers are unique. When change occurs, old codes are retired and the next available identifier is assigned.

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Coding structure example for 506003 Karratha

S/T

IREG

IARE

IARE Name

5

06

003

Karratha