Friday, December 21, 2007

Festive Facts and Figures

Some festive season figures:
  • In 2007 Santa Claus will be visiting around 5.2 million Australian families, 3.2 million of which have children under 15 years of age.

  • In preparation for Christmas, over $10 million worth of Christmas tree lighting and more than $56 million worth of other Christmas-related articles have been imported this year (up until October).

  • More Australian residents travel overseas on Christmas Day to "visit family and friends" (7,712 people last year) than those who travel to Australia for the same reason (5,235 short term visitors arrived in Australia on Christmas Day last year).

More Festive Facts and Figures from the ABS

Monday, December 17, 2007

Stats round-up: blogs, podcasts and a Christmas quiz

CSU Library Health blog: keep up-to-date with new research, reports, statistics and other information about health and psychology.

Blog about Stats: check what's new on the web with data visualisation and statistics dissemination.

More or Less: discover the truth behind the statistics with this BBC radio program. Test your knowledge of maths, statistics, economics and trivia with the More or Less Christmas numbers quiz.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Childhood Obesity

Childhood obesity is currently a topic of great interest in Australia, with the Childhood Obesity Summit being held in Sydney this week.
Several initiatives are underway which will lead to improved data on childhood obesity, nutrition, and physical activity levels.

  • The next ABS National Health Survey, being conducted August 2007 to June 2008, is collecting physical measurements from persons aged 5 and above, including height, weight, waist and hip circumference. Previous National Health Survey data for height and weight has been self-reported.

  • The proposed Federal Government strategy Healthy Kids Check will assess the body mass index of all four year olds.

  • The Kids Eat, Kids Play survey was undertaken by the CSIRO during 2007, aiming to measure children's nutrition and activity patterns, and record height, weight and waist measurements. Data from this survey will be directly comparable with the 1995 ABS National Nutrition survey.


Where to find current data on obesity
The latest issue of ABS News for Libraries has an overview of key resources for overweight and obesity data in the section Health Hot Spot: Obesity.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Water Watchers

For an insight into what Australians are doing to save water - take a look at the just released Environmental Issues: People's Views and Practices (cat. no. 4602.0).

Find out how many people turn off the tap when they clean their teeth (23.9%) or the number of households using grey water (55%).
Victorians are leading the way in flushing the toilet less often/only when needed; and Queensland has the highest proportion of people sharing baths or showers.

You can also discover the number of households with swimming pools or rainwater tanks; how people are watering their gardens; and who's not happy with the quality of their water and why. This is an annual survey, with a set of changing topics which rotate over a period of three years, so data can be compared with earlier years to see how views and practices have changed over time.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

International Volunteer Day - 5th December

Over 5 million Australians do voluntary work. The 2006 Census was the first Australian Census to include questions on unpaid work, including voluntary work for organisations or groups.

This year also saw the release of data from the latest survey of Voluntary Work in Australia (cat. no. 4441.0). A factsheet of key statistics from the Survey is available from the Volunteering Australia website.

An example of how volunteering statistics can inform planning and decision-making can be seen in the recent Public Libraries Australia Conference paper Volunteering in the 21st Century - what does it mean for Libraries?

Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore ...

Ever wanted to know how many people move address around Australia? Several ABS collections have data on this. You can find information about movement within and between states and territories. This is known as internal migration.

For data from the Census of Population and Housing, including thematic maps, go to the Census page and use the "Choosing a Topic" link. You'll find several data sets to choose from under the "Migration - Internal" topic.

Other ABS collections with information on internal migration include Australian Demographic Statistics, June 2007 (cat. no. 3101.0), Migration, Australia, 2005-06 (cat. no. 3412.0) and Historical Population Statistics, 2006 (cat. no. 3105.0.65.001). Go to the Details tab to see the full range of data products available for each of these. Tables 64 and 65 of the Historical Population Statistics go back to 1860.

Graph created from data in 3101.0 Tables 16A and 16B

Monday, December 3, 2007

The Digital Divide: who has Internet access?

63% of homes across Australia had access to the Internet in 2006. While two-thirds of homes in major cities had internet access, only 42% in very remote Australia had access. Broadband was used by 46% of homes in major cities and 24% in very remote Australia.

Patterns of Internet Access in Australia (cat. no. 8146.0.55.001) uses Census 2006 data to look at internet access across Australia. Data is cross-tabulated with various socio-economic characteristics, such as age, income, disability, employment or indigenous status.

For information on Business use of the internet see Summary of IT Use and Innovation in Australian Business, 2005-06 (cat. no. 8166.0), also a recently released new publication.