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1316.3 - Statistical Update Queensland (Newsletter), May 2002  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 04/06/2002   
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In This Issue

EditorialReviews
The Survey of Tourist Accommodation Is Being Reviewed!
Statistical Developments
Improvements to the Compilation of Economic Statistics
Voluntary Work CURF to Be Released Soon
New Labour Theme Page on ABS Web Site
ABS Service Industries Theme Page
Queensland on the ABS Web Site
Freight Movements Survey
Australian Business Register Counts - Electronic Delivery
Characteristics of Small Business, Australia
Life, Australia, and Everything
Social Capital

Census
Census 2001: Launch of Statistical Output
Indigenous Profiles To Be Free on the ABS Web Site

Indigenous Statistics
Housing and Infrastructure in Aboriginal and Torres Stait Islander Communities
Measuring Australia’s Progress - Australia’s Indigenous Population


Editorial

My name is Sally Barrett and I am an Assistant Director of the Queensland State and Territories Statistical Services Branch of the Queensland Office of the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). Our team will be building on current relationships to ensure the ABS has a good understanding of the Queensland Government's statistical needs and priorities.

I started my career in the ABS in 1982 and have witnessed many changes in the ABS during this time. When I joined the ABS we had a data entry pool where all statistical forms were sent for data to be captured manually by typing. Today we have optical code readers and transfer of data electronically. In 1982 we had a typing pool: today we all have personal computers on our desks, networked across the entire country! All ABS publications used to be hard copy and were compiled manually, they were commonly found in libraries and in government offices. Now, in addition to hard copy, we have Acrobat files and data cubes on the world wide web and provide publications in electronic format. With modern technology the ABS can customise output according to a client's specifications. In the age of the information economy, the ABS has felt increasing demands from an information hungry client base. It is an exciting time to be in the ABS.

After a number of years in the ABS, I have gathered a good deal of experience in working on data collections and in client servicing. Some of the data collections I have worked on are: Interstate Trade, Traffic Accidents, Manufacturing Census, and Retail Census, the ABS Business Register and the Survey of Tourist Accommodation. Through my time in Client Services I have been exposed to the full range of ABS data collections and projects.

The ABS puts a lot of effort into developing the knowledge and skills of their staff and I have been privileged to receive some top rate training in a range of skills, most importantly statistical concepts and methods. Working for Australia's National Statistical Agency has been a pleasure and has ensured for me an interesting career.

In my job as Assistant Director of the Queensland State and Territories Statistical Services, I will be ensuring we deliver high quality research, analytical and publication services to support State Government priority needs. If there are any issues you would like to discuss, please feel free to give me a call on my direct line 07 3222 6083 or email me on sally.barrett@abs.gov.au

- Sally Barrett

Improvements to the Compilation of Economic Statistics

In April 2000, the ABS released an information paper, ABS Statistics and The New Tax System (Cat. no. 1358.0), which foreshadowed changes in the statistical infrastructure supporting the compilation of ABS economic series. The changes will allow better use of data available from the taxation system to improve efficiency, coverage and sample design.

Annotations in publications being produced now or in the near future will identify whether they are the last publication compiled using the old infrastructure. Subsequent releases will feature estimates for the latest period and will be compiled on the new basis. To facilitate comparisons over time, releases will include either estimates of the impact on statistical series of the infrastructure changes (annual publications) or adjusted historical series so that all estimates are presented on the new basis (subannual publications).

An information paper, Improvements in ABS Economic Statistics (Arising from The New Tax System) (Cat. no. 1372.0), was released on 6 May 2002. The paper describes the forthcoming changes in more detail and provides information about the treatment of statistical impacts of the changes across ABS economic series.

Please take note
Paul Mahoney, Director, Tax Reform Unit, ABS Canberra, will conduct a seminar in Brisbane on Monday 1 July 2002 from 9.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. to complement this information paper. If ABS economic statistics are relevant to your field of interest then the above seminar will be of interest to you. If you wish to attend, please contact Margaret Thomson on 07 3222 6367 or margaret.thomson@abs.gov.au by close of business 6 June 2002.

For further information contact Paul Mahoney on 02 6252 5505 or paul.mahoney@abs.gov.au

Voluntary Work CURF to Be Released Soon

A confidentialised unit record file (CURF) from the 2000 Voluntary Work Survey is due for release on 21 June 2002. The survey provides data on people’s involvement in unpaid voluntary work, through an organisation or group. This includes the type of organisation with which the voluntary work is associated, the type of activities carried out and time spent volunteering. Information was also collected about the volunteers, their characteristics, their perceived benefits from volunteering and their reasons for volunteering.

The Voluntary Work CURF (Cat. no. 4441.0.30.001) will be available on compact disk, priced at $8,000. For inquiries regarding purchase of the CURF please contact Javad Seyedi on 02 6252 6063 or javad.seyedi@abs.gov.au

For further information regarding the survey contact Javad Seyedi as above or Elisabeth Davis on 02 6252 7880 or elisabeth.davis@abs.gov.au

New Labour Theme Page on ABS Web Site

The ABS will release the Labour Theme Page on its web site on 12 June 2002. This will provide easier access to labour related statistical information, as it will help users find the data that they require and assist in providing metadata for the surveys. In addition, it will be of assistance in communicating with clients, details about changes in labour related products.

The theme page will include:
  • A catalogue of relevant products.
  • Links to more detailed statistical output and related metadata.
  • Links to articles, information papers and detailed papers on statistical developments relating to labour statistics.
  • Links to reference material such as the manual Labour Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods (Cat. no. 6102.0).
  • Links to other relevant web sites.

For further information contact Craig Blair, Labour Market Section, on 02 6252 5967 or craig.blair@abs.gov.au

ABS Service Industries Statistics Theme Page

The ABS Service Industries Statistics Program launched a theme page on the ABS Web Site on 22 February 2002.

The theme page contains information on the service industries statistical program, products and services, including information on the following industries:
  • Wholesale Trade
  • Retail Trade
  • Accommodation, Cafes and Restaurants
  • Transport and Storage
  • Property and Business Services
  • Health and Community Services
  • Cultural and Recreational Services
  • Personal and Other Services

Up to date information on the latest publications, publications to be released soon and the ABS rolling program of collections is available from the theme page.

For further information contact Sandra Hine on 02 6252 6532 or sandra.hine@abs.gov.au

Queensland on the ABS Web Site

Staff from the ABS Queensland office are currently assembling a new reference product for the ABS web site, containing statistics, information and topical articles about Queensland. These additional pages to the ABS web site will include an extensive network of links to other ABS web pages and many non-ABS web sites, such as the Queensland Government web site. The inclusion of links to a wide range of web sites will enable the 6,000 visitors per day to the ABS web site to have easy access to a comprehensive coverage of statistics and information on Queensland.

If you are aware of any web sites containing statistics or information on Queensland that you feel would add value to the Queensland pages, please contact Lynne Peterson on 07 3222 6207 or lynne.peterson@abs.gov.au

Freight Movements Survey

Results from the Freight Movements Survey were released on 15 March 2002. These statistics result from the most comprehensive survey the ABS has undertaken on freight movements across all modes (road - articulated vehicles only, rail, sea and air). With the release of tonne-kilometres data, the survey provides this key measure of the Australian domestic freight task for the first time.

About the Survey

The publication presents estimates of freight moved by all transport modes (road - articulated vehicles only, rail, sea and air) within Australia for the period 1 April 2000 to 31 March 2001 and are the first results using a new collection methodology.

A sample of approximately 14,000 articulated vehicles (almost a quarter of the Australian total) was selected to report over 26 fortnightly periods within the reference year.

Collection of rail, sea and air freight movements has been conducted as a census since June quarter 1994.

The Publication

The publication contains 17 tables which provide statistics on tonnes and tonne-kilometres of freight moved within Australia. The information is presented for each modeof transport by State/Territory of origin and destination, and separately for Statistical Division of origin and Statistical Division of destination. Tonnes and tonne-kilometres estimates are also available by broad commodity group, method of transport (liquid bulk, solid bulk, containerised or other). Estimates of dangerous goods and refrigerated goods are also included.

In the 12 months ended 31 March 2001, the transport network in Australia, comprising the modes of road (articulated vehicles only), rail, sea and air accounted for an estimated 1,171 million tonnes of freight handled and 304,284 million tonne-kilometres.

Queensland was the State of origin of 30% of the total tonne-kilometres travelled and 27% of the total tonnes moved in Australia. This was due mainly to large shipments of commodities, such as coal and livestock, over long distances from the central and western areas of the State.

Of the total tonne-kilometres travelled in Queensland , 84% (77,107 million) were for movements where the origin and the destination of the freight was within Queensland (i.e. intrastate). In contrast, 96% of total tonnes carried were intrastate.

Most States and Territories recorded higher tonne-kilometres travelled for freight originating in non-capital-city areas than for freight originating in capital city areas. This was most evident in Queensland, where 85% of Queensland’s total tonne-kilometres originated in the non-capital-city areas due to the movement of large tonnages of bulk commodities.

Total tonne-kilometres travelled by road in Queensland were almost evenly shared between freight originating in capital city areas and freight originating in non-capital-city areas. For rail and sea, however, the greater majority of tonne-kilometres travelled, 96% and 90%, respectively, were for freight originating from Queensland’s non-capital-city areas.

Future Data Release Plans

More detailed statistics will be released on a progressive basis over the coming months.

Further details on the results from this survey can be found in Freight Movements, Summary Australia (Cat. no. 9220.0) copies of which are available for purchase from ABS bookshops and the ABS web site. The media release and the summary of findings from the publication are available free from the ABS web site.

For further information contact Linda Watson on 07 3222 6336 or linda.watson@abs.gov.au or Ros Higgins on 07 3222 6310 or ros.higgins@abs.gov.au

Australian Business Register Counts - Electronic Delivery

Australian Business Register - Counts of ABNs, Electronic Delivery (Cat. no. 1369.0.055.001) was released on 26 March 2002. It contains State data on single State enterprises by industry and turnover size and multi-State enterprises by States/Territories of location. At June 2001, there were 14,972 multi-State employing businesses in Australia , of which 8,090 had operations in Queensland.

At June 2001 the number of employing single State business entities operating in Queensland that were registered with the Australian Business Register (ABR) for an active Australian Business Number (ABN) and active for GST was 144,728. A further 2,124 employing multi-State business entities registered and active for GST had Queensland as their State of main business location.

Of employing single State businesses based in Queensland, registered and active for GST, Property and Business Services (26,076) had the greatest numbers, followed by Retail Trade (23,153) and Construction (20,113).

The majority (57%) of employing single State businesses based in Queensland, registered and active for GST, estimated their annual turnover to range between $100,000 and $500,000. An annual turnover of less than $50,000 was estimated by 10% , while 0.4% (535) estimated that their annual turnover would exceed $20m.

For further information contact the National Information Service on 1300 135 070 or client.services@abs.gov.au and quote Product No. 1369.0.55.001.

In addition to the above, there are two further special data services available:

Single Location Business Entities by Postcode by Industry Division (Product no. 8136.0.55.001) (Released 26 March 2002)
Sample consultancy: A researcher needs to know the counts of business entities broken down by industry and turnover size for all postcodes in a specific area.

Single-State Business Entities by Industry Class by State (Product no. 8138.0.55.001) (Released 26 March 2002)
Sample consultancy: A residential property developer is seeking indication of availability of businesses to perform infrastructure activities required to prepare a proposed residential land release to the public. The information is needed as the vendor is aware there is already a substantial amount of this activity going on and they wish to gauge their prospects of engaging local businesses to perform the required work.

For further information contact the National Information Service on 1300 135 070 or client.services@abs.gov.au and quote the appropriate Product No.

Characteristics of Small Business, Australia

The ABS released the biennial publication, Characteristics of Small Business, Australia (Cat. no. 8127.0) in March 2002. The publication contains details of the June 2001 supplementary survey of households looking at the characteristics of small business operators and their businesses. It provides data on age; sex; ethnicity; educational qualifications; hours worked; length of operation of the business; number of operators per business; the use of computers and use of the Internet by small businesses. Details of home based small businesses are also presented in a separate section. Where possible, results from both the November 1999 and June 2001 surveys are presented with average annual change measures. All of the above data is contained in separate State and Territory tables within the publication.

Queensland showed an average annual growth in the numbers of operators of 14.3% between November 1999 and June 2001 compared with 8.8% for Australia. Home based businesses in Queensland grew an annual average of 13.6% for males and 18.0% for female operators.

For further information contact Ross Upson on (02) 6252 5644 or ross.upson@abs.gov.au

Life, Australia and Everything

Measuring Australia’s Progress (MAP) was launched by the Australian Statistician, Dennis Trewin on 4 April 2002 at the Melbourne Institute Conference ‘Toward Opportunity and Prosperity’ and is now available on AusStats. More than 2 years in the making, the first issue of the new publication, Measuring Australia’s Progress (Cat. no. 1370.0), has been referred to in the media as ‘about as close as any statistician can get to the meaning of life’.

Perhaps the most difficult part of the project was making decisions about which areas of progress were important enough to have headline status and what were the best indicators to measure each. In addition to a large consultation and peer review process, we were fortunate enough to have received advice from a panel of experts, with whom we consulted throughout the project’s development. These people, all from outside government, are each expert in one or more of MAP’s dimensions.

The following table shows the 15 dimensions of national progress presented and the corresponding indicators analysed in MAP.


Headline dimension
          Headline indicator

National incomeReal net national disposable income per capita
National wealthReal net national worth per capita
CrimeRecorded crime rates : assault and unlawful entry
EducationPercentage of 25-64 year olds with a vocational or higher education qualification
Economic disadvantage and inequalityReal mean equivalised disposable income of households in the 2nd and 3rd deciles
WorkUnemployment rate
BiodiversityExtinct, endangered and threatened birds and mammals
HealthLife expectancy at birth
Land : land clearanceArea of land cleared per annum
Land : land degradationSalinity : assets in areas affected or with high potential to be affected by salinity
Air qualityNumber of days when fine particle concentrations exceed health standards
Greenhouse gasesNet greenhouse emissions (CO2 equivalent)
Inland watersPercentage of water management areas where water use is above 70% of sustainable yield
Social attachmentNo headline indicator. But the data presented include suicide rates, people living alone, drug deaths, attendance at cultural and sporting events, and voluntary work.
HousingNo headline indicator. But the data presented include indicators of overcrowding and housing stress (affordability).


Supplementary commentaries are also included which provide further information about the headline dimensions or other areas of progress not judged quite important enough to warrant ‘headline’ status.

The publication, which uses both ABS and other data, is aimed at the general public and will, we hope, encourage Australians to assess the bigger picture when contemplating progress in all its forms, as well as encouraging debate that focusses on facts, not anecdotes.

MAP does not claim to measure every aspect of progress that is important, nor does it consider all of the many different ways that parts of Australia and groups of Australians are progressing. MAP cannot be comprehensive in its treatment of any dimension of progress, so it provides a window into the rich ABS catalogue of publications and data, to encourage those interested in particular aspects of progress to find out more.

For further information contact Jon Hall on 02 6252 7221 or jon.hall@abs.gov.au or Ken Tallis on 02 6252 7290 or ken.tallis@abs.gov.au

Social Capital

Do people talk to you in the streets around your home? How many of your neighbours do you know? Who would you trust to look after your children for a while, or keep an eye on your house while you are away? Do you get together with other people to pursue a common interest, fundraise for a charity or cause, play sport, or sew, or sing? How about local government elections, do you feel voting is worthwhile? If your community recognised the need for a place where young people could skate board or meet, or a bus stop near the retirement village, or occasional seats along the footpath, would people get together to make this happen? Would they know how to tap into resources and influence to increase their impact? Or work together with local government and businesses to create new jobs?

These and a range of similar questions have become increasingly important in understanding why some communities remain vital under setbacks while others become demoralised. The quality of people’s relationships with family and friends have been associated by some researchers with better health and the range of acquaintances with better job prospects. Crime and perceptions of safety have also been shown to be influenced by the way people relate to each other in an area.

The ABS has responded to this strongly emerging interest in the way communities function by beginning work on a statistical framework for social capital and a set of indicators to measure it. This development draws on work by a number of researchers in Australia and world-wide.

A first draft of the social capital framework was presented for discussion in the Brisbane office of the ABS on 8 and 9 May. More than 50 interested people from community groups, State and Commonwealth Government agencies, local government and universities came and joined in a lively discussion. They provided useful comments, criticisms and insights to feed into improving the framework. Further consultation will take place at each stage of the project.

For further information contact Julia Graczyk on 02 6252 6108 or julia.graczyk@abs.gov.au or Elisabeth Davis on 02 6252 7880 or elisabeth.davis@abs.gov.au

The Survey of Tourist Accommodation Is Being Reviewed!

The ABS quarterly Survey of Tourist Accommodation (STA) is a mailout collection that collects statistics on the capacity and operations of all in-scope accommodation establishments. Many of the data items are collected by month. The survey is conducted under the authority of the Census and Statistics Act and achieves high response rates from the respondents in the survey. It is actively supported by relevant government agencies, by tourism industry bodies and by the respondents who provide data.

The STA includes hotels, resorts, motels, guest houses and serviced apartments with 15 or more rooms or units. In Queensland every quarter nearly 1,000 of these accommodation establishments provide data for the STA. This is highly valued by the tourism industry, by accommodation operators and by government agencies engaged in monitoring and promoting the tourism industry in Queensland.

Every third year, beginning with 2000, the scope of the STA is expanded to also include holiday flats and units with 15 or more units, caravan parks with 40 or more powered sites and/or cabins, and visitor hostels with 25 or more bed spaces.

To ensure that the STA remains relevant and responsive to user needs a review of the scope and outputs from the STA is currently underway. The review is a consultative process which seeks to maximise the benefits to STA stakeholders and the end-users of the data.

In August 2001, stakeholders and users were asked to provide feedback on an STA review paper. The paper discussed stakeholder issues and concerns about the current survey and proposed some alternative options for the conduct of the STA. A range of users also completed a questionnaire. All users were invited to attend round table discussions which were conducted in each State during September/October 2001. The discussions were an opportunity to discuss the issues and options and explain how the data from the survey are used to inform makers of government policy. A paper listing some possible options for the STA was discussed at the Tourism Statistics Consultative Group meeting in March 2002. The review findings and recommendations resulting from these user consultations are currently being discussed within the ABS and with major stakeholders. A future issue of Statistical Update will report on the changes to the STA resulting from the current review.

For further information on the STA (including data availability) contact the Tourism National Project Centre on 1800 077 274 or kerry.mcgreevy@abs.gov.au

Census 2001: Launch of Statistical Output



Early Release

The first release of 2001 Census data is planned for Monday 17 June 2002. This release is one month earlier than for the 1996 Census and with more data and products available from launch.

The second release of data, which will comprise data variables requiring more involved processing (such as occupation, industry and qualifications) is scheduled for November 2002. This two-phase release strategy allows the Census information to be available in the public domain as early as possible.

Only last August, householders throughout Australia filled in their Census forms. In the last nine months , over 850 staff at the Data Processing Centre in Sydney have been engaged in the enormous task of capturing, coding, and validating over 700 million responses from some 9 million households. The earlier release of data this Census is largely due to the effective use of the latest technology. This has led to increased automation, both for input processing and, even more significantly, for output production.

Available from launch day will be:
  • the National publication: Selected Social and Housing Characteristics, Australia (Cat. no. 2015.0);
  • the Basic Community Profiles and Indigenous Profiles (first release tables);
  • Census Snapshots - summary data and commentary for geographical areas including Statistical Local Areas (SLA);
  • Census Basics - CD-ROM containing Basic Community Profiles and generic digital boundaries and
  • the first releases of customised data requested.

The Internet and email will be used extensively in disseminating the 2001 Census statistics to the community. More data will be free of charge than ever before. This will include the main findings from all Census statistical publications, Census Snapshots, Basic Community Profiles down to SLA level and selected Indigenous Profiles (see following article). Priced products can be downloaded and paid for through the e-commerce facility on the ABS web site. This web site provides comprehensive reference information to help users understand the Census data, products and services available. Everyone interested in using Census data is encouraged to visit the ABS web site.

For further information contact Keith Carter on 07 3222 6360 or keith.carter@abs.gov.au

Indigenous Profiles To Be Free on the ABS Web Site

For the first time, a range of Indigenous Profiles (based on place of enumeration) will be available from the ABS Web Site free of charge for the geographic levels of Australia, States/Territories, ATSIC Regions and Indigenous Area. From 17 June 2002, Census Indigenous Profiles for 2001 (release 1 tables), both free and charged components, will be available via the ABS Web Site.

The Indigenous Profile contains 29 tables that provide key Census characteristics of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons, families and dwellings. Some tables provide comparisons with the non-Indigenous population. All tables within this profile are available for the following geographic levels: ATSIC Region, Local Government Area, Statistical Sub-Division, Statistical Division, Statistical District, State and Australia.


The Indigenous Profile is based on place of enumeration. Tables I01, I02, I03, I13 and I29 will be available for Indigenous Locations and Statistical Local Areas.

Indigenous Locations are single CDs or aggregates of CDs which have a population of around 80 Indigenous persons. They are the lowest level in the Indigenous geographic hierarchy (apart from individual CDs). Indigenous Locations aggregate to Indigenous Areas.

Indigenous Areas are aggregates of Collection Districts (CDs) which together form areas with a population of around 280 Indigenous persons. Indigenous Areas aggregate to ATSIC Regions.

ATSIC Regions are administrative areas used by the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) for the election of Regional Councils which represent the local Indigenous population. They are provided for under the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission Act, 1989. ATSIC Regions are approximated by aggregating the data for collection districts (CDs) which lie wholly or partly within the ATSIC Region. There are 36 ATSIC Regions (including the Torres Strait Area) which together cover all of Australia.

The 2001 Indigenous Profile will be released in two phases. First release processing tables (Tables I01 - I12) are those tables containing variables which are easy to process and will be available at Launch on 17 June. Second release processing tables (Tables I13 - I29) contain variables which require more complex processing and will be available in November 2002.


Important information relating to the quality of Indigenous Census data will be released in Population Distribution, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians (Cat. no. 4705.0) which is scheduled for release on 28 June 2002.

For further information contact Peta Wilcox on 02 6252 6734 or peta.wilcox@abs.gov.au

Housing and Infrastructure in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities

Housing and Infrastructure in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities, 2001 (Cat. no. 4710.0) was released on 6 May. The publication provides data on the current housing stock, management practices and financial arrangements of Indigenous organisations that provide housing to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. It also includes data on housing and related infrastructure such as water, electricity, sewerage systems, drainage and solid waste disposal, as well as other facilities available in discrete Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities such as transport, communication, education, sport and health services.

The publication includes time series information incorporating selected data from the previous (1999) survey and maps showing the distribution of Indigenous Housing Organisations (IHOs) and discrete Indigenous communities across Australia.


State comparisons are available for IHOs and Indigenous communities on:

IHOs
  • the number and type of IHOs,
  • the number and condition of IHO managed permanent dwellings,
  • sources of income to IHOs,
  • types of housing grants received by IHOs,
  • average weekly rent per IHO managed permanent dwelling,
  • average maintenance

Communities
  • number of communities and reported usual population,
  • Remoteness Area of Australia,
  • the number of occupied temporary dwellings and the number of persons living in these dwellings requiring permanent housing,
  • the main source of drinking water and electricity, and the main sewerage system,
  • the number of permanent dwellings connected to utilities,
  • the number of utility failures,
  • duration of flooding and ponding,
  • type of rubbish disposal,
  • road access
  • postal delivery,
  • telecommunications
  • access to sporting facilities and environment health workers
  • distances to the nearest schools, hospital, community health centre and chemist.

For further information contact Ian Brodie-Reed on 02 6252 7269 or ian.brodie-reed@abs.gov.au

Measuring Australia’s Progress - Australia’s Indigenous Population

On 4 April 2002, the ABS released the first issue of a new publication Measuring Australia’s Progress (Cat. no. 1370.0). At the heart of the publication are about 30 essays analysing progress in the social, economic and environmental aspects of national life during the past decade or more.

The focus of Measuring Australia’s Progress is Australia-wide, but recognising the particular disadvantages facing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, some brief analyses are included for these Australians. The analyses contrast Indigenous Australians’ health, housing, education, work, etc. with that of other Australians.

Future editions of Measuring Australia’s Progress will include a chapter or ‘theme essay’ looking at important issues underlying Australia’s progress. The ABS intends to address Indigenous issues more fully in the first of these theme essays.

For some aspects of progress, data comparing Indigenous Australians with other Australians, or showing the changing levels of Indigenous disadvantage over time, are not yet available and may be difficult to develop.

Perhaps more importantly, it seems likely that Indigenous Australians’ very notions of what constitutes progress may differ from those of other Australians. Issues relating to cultural and spiritual values, and language, for example, or the relationship of Indigenous Australians with the land, are likely to be very important. For other dimensions of progress, such as social attachment, Indigenous views of progress may differ from the notions set out in the first issue of the publication.

These are important matters which need to be addressed in broad consultation with Indigenous people and organisations. The second issue of Measuring Australia’s Progress, with the theme essay on Indigenous issues, is tentatively scheduled for late 2003. Between now and then, the ABS will consult Indigenous people and organisations to try to understand more fully what should be included in the second issue and how it might be measured.

Readers who wish to comment on the publication or who would like to contribute to enhancing the treatment of Indigenous issues in future publications are encouraged to write to the ABS at the address below

Please write to:
Ken Tallis
Analysis Branch
Australian Bureau of Statistics
Locked Bag 10
Belconnen ACT 2616
    For further information, contact Ken Tallis on 02 6252 7290 or ken.tallis@abs.gov.au
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