[talk-au] Bulk loading all the Australian Statistical Geography Standard into the OSM - a query from the Australian Bureau of Statistics [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

Marcus Blake marcus.blake at abs.gov.au
Wed Feb 23 01:01:50 GMT 2011

To the Australian OSM community, 

The Australian Bureau of Statistics has recent published the first part of 
a new statistical geography, the Australia Statistical Geography Standard 
or ASGS for short. The boundaries are based on a new basic spatial unit 
called a mesh block which have been aggregated to create efficient spatial 
units for the dissemination and analysis of statistical data. They have 
been released in advanced of the 2011 Australian census and are fixed for 
the next 5 years.  The attached links and PDF file provide additional 

The ABS Geography section is presently investigating the possibility of 
loaded the new Australian Statistical Geography Standard into the OSM 

As a starting point, I'd like to start a discussion about how this could 
be achieved, if it is possible at all.   

>From the ABS point of view the principle reason for doing this is that an 
the OSM database would hold  a copy of the official version of the 
boundaries and that this point of truth would be available for all OSM 
users and downstream distributors. It would therefore become one of the 
channels by which the ABS distributes the ASGS boundaries and associated 
coding structures 

There are three main issues I can see need addressing (and probably a 
large number of other issues I'm not yet aware of ) 

1. Is the OSM database a suitable location for the ASGS 

The ABS would like to facilitate the use of the new ASGS as much as 
possible and the OSM database looks to be an efficient mechanism for the 
distribution of the spatial boundaries and codes. But what does the 
community think??... 

2. Licensing 

Even though ABS data (including all spatial data) is released under a CC 
license it does require attribution (Attribution 2.5 Australia CC BY 2.5). 
How is this license model handled under OSM. Is there a means to 
associated attribution with particular "layers" within the OSM database? 

3. The practicality's of loading load. 

I note previous posts on loading the ABS Postal Areas and the technical 
problems involved.  What is the most efficient and best way of load a 
categorising these data within the database? Our preference would be to 
bulk upload through an FME process.  Perhaps this is a question for the 
imports list? 

Any Questions for the ABS? 

Lastly if there are any questions people have on  the new ASGS (and the 
old ASGC) or anything on the definition or application of statistical 
boundaries I am happy to answer specific queries and contribute to 



Marcus Blake 
Marcus.Blake at abs.gov.au

Assistant Director
Geography Section
Australian Bureau of Statistics 


Additional Information 

2911.0.55.003 - Census of Population and Housing: Outcomes from the 2011 
Census Output Geography Discussion Paper, 2011

This publication a good diagram of the ASGS 


ABS License details: CC Attribution 2.5 Australia 


The first volume of the ASGS. 

This includes all the electronic boundaries in MID/MIF and Shape formats 

Australian Statistical Geography Standard (ASGS): Volume 1 - Main 
Structure and Greater Capital City Statistical Areas, July 2011 (cat no. 

The ABS Geography website 


Geography Frequently Asked Questions 


Free publications and statistics available on www.abs.gov.au

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