ABS/Universities Australia Agreement

The ABS/Universities Australia Agreement provides a range of products and services to participating Australian universities. Under the Agreement, staff and students are not individually invoiced for their use of the charged ABS products and services that are covered under the Agreement. This is because Universities Australia has paid for access on behalf of participating universities.

See How to apply for access to products available under the ABS/Universities Australia Agreement. Compare access options and see Available microdata for the full range of products.

For more information about Universities Australia, visit www.universitiesaustralia.edu.au or email contact@universitiesaustralia.edu.au.

Other useful information for university students is available at Services for universities.



TableBuilder is an online tool for creating tables from ABS Census or survey data. Starting with an empty table, data variables can be selected for cross-tabulation. Tables can be saved within TableBuilder or exported in CSV, Excel or SDMX format. Census and survey data are split into separate online tools.


Microdata (unit record data) provides detailed information about individuals, households and businesses. It is released to authorised users for approved purposes of statistical analysis and research. Available products include basic and expanded Confidentialised Unit Record Files (CURFs) and Detailed Microdata. Microdata can be accessed in the following ways:

  • MicrodataDownload allows authorised users to download Basic CURFs for use in a user's own environment.
  • DataLab provides on-site and virtual access to Expanded CURFs and Detailed Microdata.


Under the current Agreement, users at each participating university may access the DataLab. The DataLab provides:
  • on-site access in ABS premises in each state and territory, with advance bookings essential
  • standard statistical analysis packages (SAS, SPSS, Stata and R)
  • access to Expanded CURFs and Detailed Microdata that users have been approved to access.

Loading of other statistical packages or software may incur additional charges outside the Agreement.

Hundreds of topics and datasets available to university researchers

The ABS/Universities Australia Agreement allows university members to access a broad range of topics, including the Census of Population and Housing, health, education, business, labour force, migrants, crime, disabilities, ageing and carers. Data is available though:
  • over 70 TableBuilder datasets. New data is released regularly and automatically added on the day of release to the profiles of university members.
  • over 100 Basic CURFs in MicrodataDownload. New releases are available on the day of release for authorised university members to download.
  • over 100 Expanded CURFs and Detailed Microdata files in the DataLab. University members need to request access to each dataset.

Luxembourg Income Study

Luxembourg Income Study (LIS) is a cross national data archive located in Luxembourg. This data can be accessed under the Universities Australia Agreement. For further information see the LIS section of International research including Australian microdata.