Statistical Spatial Framework guidance material

Detailed development work on the SSF for Australia is currently being finalised by the ABS and will be released progressively.

The following information is currently available for the following key topics.

Summary information

The Global Statistical Geospatial Framework (GSGF) was developed using Australia's Statistical Spatial Framework as a base. Both frameworks are compatible and will develop in parallel. For more information see Global Statistical Geospatial Framework: Linking Statistics and Place, July 2018.

For a paper providing the context to the SSF, A Statistical Spatial Framework to Inform Regional Statistics was delivered at the 2013 World Statistics Congress.

Address data collection and geocoding standards

The paper Geocoding Unit Record Data Using Address and Location provides guidance on methods and practices for geocoding unit record data to custodians of socio-economic data.

The National Address Management Framework (NAMF) is a whole of government endorsed standard for using address information.

Within NAMF, the address location dataset for geocoding is G-NAF. G-NAF will also provide an ASGS Mesh Block code, which provides the link to ABS statistical areas. This dataset is also available under open data terms at

Common geographic boundaries

The paper Using Geographic Boundaries and Classifications with Statistics provides guidance for users and custodians of socio-economic data wishing to understand the basic principles of spatially enabled data and geographic classifications, as well as resources available for adding geographic information to your data or converting data across different regions.

The Australian Statistical Geography Standards (ASGS) contains the SSF recommended common boundaries for releasing socio-economic data

ABS Geospatial Web Services are a set of services that facilitate the use of the Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS) by computer applications.

Metadata standards for geospatially-enabled information

Statistical metadata standards include the complementary SDMX and DDI standards.

The international standard for geospatial metadata AS/NZS ISO 19115.1:2015 has been adopted in Australia. More information about geospatial metadata is available from the Geoscience Australia web pages on Data Standards and GeoDCAT.

The UNECE Common Metadata Framework publication provides a summary of the interrelationship between these and other metadata standards. More information is available from the SMDX Working Group and GSIM.

For more information about best practice, the OGC W3C Working Group has produced a Spatial Data on the Web Best Practices.

Protecting confidentiality and privacy of geospatially-enabled information

The Privacy Act regulates information privacy and includes a number of requirements, regulations and principles.

The Confidentiality Series by the ABS provides general information on protecting confidentiality when releasing statistical information.

The paper Protecting Privacy for Geospatially Enabled Statistics: Geographic Differencing provides guidance for custodians of socio-economic data on privacy and confidentiality risks, particularly with relation to risks that arise from geographic differencing of regional data.

Mapping and Visualisation of Statistics

The paper Making Data Meaningful Part 2 - A guide to presenting statistics from the United National provides guidance on presenting data in a clear and meaningful way. The paper includes useful guidance on mapping statistics and using other visualisation techniques. It also provides advice on preparing tables, graphs and charts, as well as addressing visual accessibility issues.

Information on the access and availability of geospatial statistical data

ABS.Stat Beta is an interactive free online tool that presents data in a searchable, flexible and dynamic way.

Data by Region provides you ease of access to ABS statistics on a particular geographical region. Use the tools to browse, search or explore by map to find statistics about different regions in Australia.

The Census data page provides points of access for this rich source of small area data.

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