Australian Census 2016; What you need to know

Monday, August 08, 2016

As demographers and social researchers there are a few calendar events that cause for celebration. Among them include population milestones, special data set releases and, of course, the Census. Rolling around only every 5 years, the Census provides us all with vital information about our nation’s population growth, infrastructure and future-planning needs.

In 2016 the Census will be held tomorrow, Tuesday 9th August. It has been conducted every 5 years since 1911, and is the biggest democratic activity in Australia. While July’s election counted 14 million votes, the 2016 Census will include every household, age group, resident and visitor – all 24 million of us.

So here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming 2016 Census.


This will be the most unique Census Australia has ever seen. In keeping with these technological times, 2 in 3 people will complete their form online, up from just 1 in 3 in 2011 and 1 in 10 back in 2006 (the first time there was an electronic option).


Firstly, the Census will show that our national population is growing, having hit a new record in February of this year and surpassing a population of 24 million people. Additionally, it will also show that Australia’s largest city – Sydney, has broken through the 5 million milestone.

Not only will the Census show that our population is growing, but also that we are ageing. Our population profile will no longer be a “population pyramid”, because for the first time there will be more Australians aged over 55 than under 20.

So the Census will show that our population is growing, ageing and as a result, it will show that we are moving. For the first time this Census will reveal that one in four Australian households live in townhouses or apartments rather than detached houses – the highest figure ever, up from just one in ten in 1966.


This year there will be a change to the religion question with the option of “No religion” now appearing at the top of that question rather than at the bottom, so it might attract some more numbers.

Additionally the question asked of women: “How many babies has she ever given birth to” states “live births only”, but will now include stillbirths and give acknowledgement of that loss And the question: “Is the person male or female” - will allow an alternative blank box for those who identify with neither gender.


Like participating in the election, it is compulsory to complete the Census. But for everyone in the country, not just citizens or residents. The Census and Statistics Act takes sitting the Census very seriously, with fines for non-completion after receiving an order to complete incurring a fine of $180 per day, and false answers can attract a fine of $1800.

But the good news is that the Act takes privacy very seriously as well and answers cannot be divulged by the ABS to anyone – even government agencies. Confidentiality is assured.


If we thought we had to wait a while for the election results, be prepared for a longer wait for the Census findings. It will be analysed at record speed, but that still means a wait of 8 months, April 2017, with the full results not coming out until 2018!

McCrindle in the Media

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

As Australia’s leading social researchers, the senior research team at McCrindle are actively involved in media commentary. From demographic analysis and future forecasts, to communication of key research findings and the identification of social trends, at McCrindle we are passionate about communicating insights in clear, accessible and useable ways.

Here are some of the most recent media pieces our research and team have been cited in:

Millenials found to be far more likely to quit work than other generations

“Millenials are a multi-career generation, moving from one job to another and from one job to further study or an overseas job. Mobility defines them,” he said.
“They’re a more educated cohort, they’re more tech-resourced. Even when they’re happy in a job they’re passive job hunters because they’re so well networked. People are approaching them on LinkedIn and they want to be future proofed.”
“They are looking for belonging and leading and shaping things. They want to be successful so if employers are empowering and involving them they will stay longer. A pay increase is a short-term fix but in the long term it’s all about engagement.”

Buyers Swap 'Traditional Aussie Dream' For High Density Apartments

McCrinde Research social demographer Mark McCrindle concedes many foreign buyers are getting into the market, but said the lift in demand was also due to more Australian singles, couples and families opting for apartments.

Australia's booming population was underpinning the shift, he said, by pushing up demand for property of which apartments were an affordable type. "In less than 2 weeks we hit the 24 million mark and that's an increase of a million people in just around three years, so it's pretty significant growth," he told The Huffington Post Australia.

Inside Sydney’s homes of the future: A city of cities as homes get smaller and taller

McCrinde Research social demographer Mark McCrindle says Sydney's residential landscape will be forced to change to cope with the population growth, with multi-use residential developments the way of the future and a move away from CBD workplaces.

“We’re essentially going to be a city of cities, with not everyone working in the CBD,” Mark explains. “People will work in the suburbs, in business parks, and we will have second, third and fourth CBD areas where you work, live and play all within the locale.”

Why money is a big issue for Australian retirees in 2016

Social researcher Mark McCrindle said financial instability was an enemy of retirees. After the GFC a lot of people had to change their retirement plans and expectations because so much was wiped off,” he said.

Falling house prices in several states were adding uncertainty to retirees looking to downsize, Mr McCrindle said, while there were social impacts caused by children failing to leave the nest. “Retirees can’t quite make their own independent decisions because they still have adult children living at home.”


According to Optus’ Renter of the Future report out today, three out of ten renting households consider themselves as “choice renters” who are not buying into the great Australian property dream. And when it comes to choice renters, they are three times more likely to be tech savvy.
The report, which was conducted by McCrindle Research shows that 2016 will see a new generation of tech-savvy renters who favour a lifestyle fuelled by freedom, flexibility and choice.
“We wanted to understand the renter and find out who they are. Demographically they’re got punch, geographically they’re got punch and as we’ve found from this technologically they’re amongst the earliest adopters,” said Mark McCrindle, social demographer.

Today's trends are coming at us faster than ever and have a life cycle that is shorter than we've ever seen before. Trends are increasingly global -- and with that, they're bigger, better, and faster.

From a generation who can track, monitor, record and analyse their every moment, to work that is increasingly being done in non-traditional places, here are some trends to watch in 2016.


Welcome to our blog...

We have a passion for research that tells a story, that can be presented visually, that brings about change and improves organisations. And we hope these resources help you know the times.

Our Social Media Sites

Facebook | McCrindle Research Social Media YouTube | McCrindle Research Social Media Twitter | McCrindle Research Social Media Flickr | McCrindle Research Social Media Pinterest | McCrindle Research Social Media Google Plus | McCrindle Research Social Media LinkedIn | McCrindle Research Social Media Mark McCrindle Slideshare

Last 150 Articles


Duchess of Cambridge sector wide study global generation fresh safe growth of sydney event royal baby recap changing face of sydney government the great screenage faux-ciliser university cars students Word Up Canberra social trends leadersip work from home weekly earnings environmental scanning royal influence non profit Christmas day Australian Families real perth experience younger generations the lucky country professional services faith infographics housing trends NT schools christmas trees unemployment authenticity presentations case study train woolworths Assistant Store Manager trends property google father's day national crime rates kate middleton workshop focus groups women New Zeland organisational culture australian community trends report media commentary 23 million car statistics investing ideas stats national private wealth learning styles geomapping Christmas Stats wealth distribution census fail sustainable Aussie mover and shaker investment coffee growing population households earn GPO church 2016 census results cooking office space researcher Real Estate Institute of Victoria ACT commuters Work place royal family emerging trends engage in depth interviews going out communicate families Christmas season culture social media faux-cilise baby twentyseventeen chairty debate men litter identity Do It Yourself overcast donate Charlotte global retail financial independence maiden names demographer cancel plans educated SA school satisfaction teaching 2009 Christmas day weather royal conferences baby names australia report money increasing densification engagement generation alpha criminal SMSF TEDx suburb customer leadership urban living local community cost of living tv new office Australia Day 2017 Cobbitty-Leppington wage volunteers breakfast slideshare casual hunger February 16 Hills Shire Council census data Elderslie-Harrington park year 12 average sydneysider equip events Christmas in Australia generational trends priorities economic New South Wales travelling cash January 26th teachers long weekend HR poor megatrends potts point global financial crisis parents hills showreel social shifts ageing the australian dream CBD Australian community trends forum motivate entrepreneur growth retirement Western Australia trends of 2017 EFF marriages income keynote speaker education research demographic analysis award communications youth unemployment housing growth mentor happiness financial dreams home future of shopping tertiary education intern high density apartments Australian communities summer young people crows nest greatness Valentine’s Day System's Architect surnames mccrindle in the media speajer cultural diveristy employment TAS australian real estate in the media World Water Day friendship wealth and income distribution trend tuesday educhat divorce demographics 1980 news rule keeper optus my business awards lalor park bureau google for education moreton bay shopping urban presentation Willowdale outsourcing cold financial planning office professional presenters 40 million who is generation z shifts mccrindle tea 24 million school students Channel 7 2013 Northern Beaches Res Vis NBRS work brands social commentary aged care shopper's pick career marketing 10 years curiosity NEETs research pack Channel Seven Territory PSI teleworking social life staff house price rise contiki ultimo group session internship Births budget live the dream hello fresh learner high school sydneysiders cica survey design Northern Territory 2020 community impact employers infographic suburban living cultural diversity baby name predictions trend bondi employmee princess charlotte consumer census 2016 Generation X learn baby name trends public speaking owning a home future Research Director Christchurch Christmas data energy ACF17 Tasmania holiday crime thrive Business analysis year 7 city Bathburst Hornsby Shire Council global narcissism sector wide ACF2017 know the times jobs of the future toys Aussies optimistic social Black Friday Black Friday Sales trends of 2016 Macquarie University volunteer social researchers weather pharmacy networking urban development ABS names manly pyrmont work-life graphs What is food insecurity? Research Executive follow gold coast financial future urban living index Education Future Forum balance school Tuesday Trends house price leader mining boom wedding 1995 housing affordability state media activity group dare to dream social researcher education resilience collaboration responsive online winter blues states award winner research on coffee food insecurity life water surname leadership workshop eliane miles FPA spirituality sydneycity winter dreaming mortgage panel transport Queensland Wellington public transport local communities aged care puzzle australian communities forum gig brand sydney event meals brand experience rent millenials 2016 census FOMO victoria culturally diverse economy daily commute hills shire generation seasons research visualisation university degree research Vocational education Australian Bureau of Statistics area gen alpha deloitte small business investor tea training house prices NFP event conference speaker grandparents australians staying home more business index employmer local rain millionth charity community event innovative entrepreneurial McCrindle Speaker menai future proofing india sydneysider baby names generations workforce socialites social change Christmas lunch australia personalities Financial Planning Association of Australia challenge TEDx Speaker demographic trends visualisation research services sun Tuesday Trend video Andrew Duffin Australian Trends celebration high density living proactive socialising social issues residents New Zealand financial fears family Crime Rates renter of the future schools students acf15 the changing face of emerging generations mythbusting thought leadership NSW alpha future generations unaffordable ease of travel repayments qualitative research VET sector daily telegraph story Kiwi friends wealth and income grave decision healthy future REIV National Conference emerging technologies cloudy days education sector selfie volunteering data social analyst meetings the hills shire shopping centre population sunny days insight Social Trend wealth inequality tableau gen z micro Engineering Manager not for profit debt data couple media release supply and demand Performance Sentiment Index village Generation Y newspaper goals dreams rise of local high density Australian Dream darwin USA Mark McCrindle in the media future proof Lower Hunter Region Sydney keynote speaker poker master mccrindle food 2012 SMART Maxim Accounting Sydney population anzac VET student housing market rich organisations Australians public speaker resource renting blaxland Retail mccrinlde moderators guide aussie culture trends analyst young australians capital cities baby boomers optus McCrindle Keynote Speakers micro apartments analysis Geoff Brailey innovation teacher McCridle social impact australian social research typical australian apartment nativity scene define omnibus marrickville wolloomooloo The Daily Edition infographic wall commute conference presentation research report belief tuesday child care "know the times" tips ACF 2016 living Millennial land of the middle class focus group staying in child hunger education future report study medicine speakers pack personal growth 1968 Melbourne choice workers rising house prices WA Foodbank Australia McCrindle Speakers world youth day society trends communication Australian Communities Trends professional development census population milestone Jura Australia IT Specialists goal digital Mount Annan-Currant Hill data analyst 1975 sydney metro teach cancelling event builders dream Christmas presents Skilling urban taskforce trades hornsby click australian business capital city Australian Census TED participants ethnography average Australian product online shopping work mates Sydney professional speaker property market technology townhouses office opening community engagement Hunter Valley #censusfail household public holiday youth the hills sydney speaker Australian Population the future Real Estate media Sydney’s south west mateship Christmas research house coffee lovers storytelling domestic program charities divorce rate snapshot norwest christianity Sydney Hills Business Chamber entrepreneurs of today DIY internships Sydney Lifestyle Study hopes future-proof etiquette do people still change their surname after marriage? christmas 2017 English sydney property market home owner social research faux-cilising vegemite sunburnt country mccrindle research collaborative Love facts data analysis Wagga Wagga seasons greetings politics donation communities screenage global generations list spend HSC religion prince george sentiments South Australia Scouts Caregiver demographic transformations giving results lifestyle Queensland: QLD travel Northern beaches Event relational REIV Conference skills earnings population map 1994 low density society Royals workplace baby names report waverton social commentator salary futurist children paying to work sydney market affordable internet china sydney hills property price digital economy entertainment Gen Y cost 2015 not-for-profit volunteering ashley mckenzie global generaion ageing population social analysis sophie renton Black Friday in Australia speaker Jura Coffee Australia Day commuting future of work wages generation Z parenting VIC gender rumbling tummies James Ward housing population growth interactive shbc keynote Australian Home Netflix TED talk offenders screenagers tattoos learning publication christmas easy rider dessert nfp holidays careers pharmacies Gen Z Expert cartodb Northern Beaches Christian School research data marriage vegetarian Australian demographics average aussie post rationalism demographic Population Clock apartments SRE maiden Understanding and Engaging with Generation Z ashley fell Financial Planning Association fears Adelaide buildings TDE suburbs Financial Planning Week care support business performance Gen X census results data visualisation Wodonga eliane social enquiry earning forecast quote home ownership JOMO the average aussie cancelling plans relevant mobile monarchy baby name purpose neutral bay sports Australia street 2016 gig economy language Mark McCrindle market research baby boom rental stress demography Merry Christmas 2017 new york times faith and belief annual income hobart finance insights conference visual plans US change national wealth middle class environment Kirsten Brewer sector affordability clothing Deaths wellbeing food bank easter forecasting 2014 property development The ABC of XYZ survey ferry huffington post world NBRS Architecture mother's day professional indonesia brisbane consumerism jobs CPI 24,000,000 bus DESTEL workplace culture millennials Lower Hunter speakers australian communities trends report groceries ACF report wealth mythbusters ipswich education future social lives christian not for profit research Myth happy holidays Australian schools financial stay home ACT Report logan future of education