Australia Tops Census Open Data Availability, UK Trails

18 February, 2013; Melbourne: As governments around the world wrestle with the enormous amount of census data they gather, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is already enabling organisations to dip into the multi-billion dollar opportunity it presents.

Thanks to its TableBuilder platform, the ABS was able to not only publish its most recent census in less than ten months; the depth of ad-hoc analysis available via easy to use visualisations adds a level of insight that supports better government and business decision making.

Based on Space-Time Research’s SuperWEB, TableBuilder lets anyone from statisticians and analysts to perform queries on any aspect of the tens of millions of records from the Australian census, with answers shown in their chosen format.

Confidentialised query results can be readily integrated into websites as well as exported in the most commonly used sharing formats such as SDMX, Excel and CSV. User access is self-service, with no need for advanced IT skills thanks to simple, drop and drag operation.

Unlike other Business Intelligence and reporting products SuperWEB provides access to all the available data, making it truly open while ensuring data confidentiality. Users can follow a Query-Answer-Query process to turn data into knowledge much quicker.

“While government programmes such as the UK’s Growth Agenda recognise the need to gain maximum advantage from big data resources, the ABS is a leader in sharing smart insights from national census data” commented Steven Hulse, CEO of Space-Time Research.

“We are increasingly working with major government departments such as the UK’s Department of Work and Pensions, US Bureau of Census and Australia’s Department of Human Services to unleash the benefits open data can bring to the community. Businesses, governments, universities and individuals can become better informed, making decisions based on rapid, readily available and accurately understood information.”

“This represents a fundamental step forward in the way we communicate our statistics to the world. The ABS is proud to have partnered with STR to produce this innovative online application that is delivering real business benefits to clients worldwide,” said Jenny Telford, Director Census Products and Services at the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

An example of how the resulting ABS data is used by the National Housing Supply Council can be found at

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