Broken Hill promotes the use of demographics to their community
The Broken Hill City Council recently adopted the use of profile.id and economy.id to explore and understand the changing characteristics of their community and their economy.
As with all .id clients, we encouraged them to promote and share these tools so their local community, local businesses and other regional associations could also access the sites to provide an evidence-base for their own planning and investment decisions.
We are delighted that they have done just that, by preparing an interesting and engaging media release containing pertinent observations as well as insightful comments.
Please read their release, published verbatim, below:
Did you know that the number of homes in Broken Hill with broadband internet connection doubled to more than 4100 or 51 per cent of the population in the five year period to 2011?
Would you be surprised to learn that Broken Hill’s Buddhist community doubled between 2006 and 2011, while Christian denominations decreased by close to 10 per cent?
Perhaps less surprising is that more than 600 jobs have been created in Broken Hill in the mining and construction sectors during the period between 2006 and 2011.
This data – along with an army of other statistical figures – are a valuable resource for Broken Hill City Council and General Manager, Mr Frank Zaknich, believes the information can be a beneficial tool to many other local individuals and organisations.
“Analysing these types of figures helps us build an understanding of how Broken Hill is evolving as a community and can provide keys to unlocking the doors that will allow us to continue to build a safe, vibrant, prosperous and culturally rich city,” Mr Zaknich explained.
“City Council subscribes to a series of demographic information resources which are designed to inform community groups, investors, business, students and the general public about the characteristics of Broken Hill’s population and how it is changing.
“The data provides the basis for making evidence-based decisions about how to provide services for the community as it changes and I’d encourage any interested groups or individuals to visit our website (www.brokenhillaustralia.com.au) and investigate the depth of research we have available,” Mr Zaknich added.
In concert with respected Melbourne-based demographic profiling and forecasting agency “.id”, City Council extracts raw demographic data from the Census and translates it into visual stories that are easily understood.
“In our work with more than 220 councils over 15 years, I’ve observed time and again that access to hard evidence about places and how they are changing provides enormous relief to decision-makers,” Ivan Motley, founder of “.id” noted.
“Investing in Census analysis can help you manage assets, allocate resources, save your staff time, encourage economic development and investment, as well as win more funding requests.
“Results for Broken Hill include detailed analysis of population, age, ethnicity, households, education, ancestry, religion, income, qualifications, occupations, employment, disability, family structure and a host of other data,” Mr Motley continued.
The latest available data (taken from the 2011 Census) reveals that Health Care and Social Assistance is the sector which employs the most people in Broken Hill, with almost 1200 employees, representing just over 14 per cent of the workforce.
The only other sectors employing more than 10 per cent of the workforce are Retail Trade (1141 workers, representing 13.8 per cent) and Mining (1052, 12.7 per cent).
Compared with results of the 2006 Census, the 2011 data discloses that more than 300 jobs have been created in the Mining sector during that five-year period, and, not surprisingly, the construction category has enjoyed a similar boost of more than 300 jobs.
However, the statistical data does not make completely positive reading for Broken Hill with figures showing a decline in the number of people performing volunteer work. In the five-year period to 2011, the Silver City shed almost 300 volunteers.
“This is another example of how important the data can be,” Andrea Roberts, City Council’s Manager Economic Development, explained.
“While anecdotal evidence suggested the availability of volunteers in Broken Hill was decreasing, identifying and quantifying that reduction in numbers allows the community to clearly acknowledge the problem and help form a plan to combat the trend.
“Local government is about the most diverse and complex business around and working with a data specialist such as “.id” allows us to analyse changes in the Broken Hill community and prepare for the future,” Ms Roberts continued.
City Council’s website (www.brokenhillaustralia.com.au) offers demographic analysis from the five most recent Censuses of Population and Housing, providing an important 20-year profile dating back to 1991.