Settlement Data Extract

Department of Social Services

Dataset Link

The Settlement Data Extract supplied for GovHack 2016, was extracted from the Settlement Database (SDB) and allows the production of statistical reports about migrants settling in Australia.

The SDB has been developed to provide statistical data for government and community agencies involved in the planning and provision of settlement services. It brings together data from various Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP) systems and a number of other sources including Medicare Australia. The SDB is a repository of information on permanent, and some temporary, migrants who have arrived in Australia since 1 January 1991.

Dataset variables

Current State

State of Residence refers to the State or Territory in which a migrant resides. State of Residence is determined from address information collected by the SDB. It should be noted that although efforts are made to keep up to date address information for migrants recorded in the SDB, not all State and Territory information can be considered as current. For many migrants, no State of Residence is recorded.

Local Government Area

Local Government Area (LGA) is a spatial unit defined in the Local Government Area Structure of the 2011 Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC) published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). LGAs aggregate to form the incorporated areas of State and Territories and as such do not cover the whole of Australia. The SDB allocates which LGA a migrant resides in based on migrant postcode data recorded in the SDB. Some postcodes may correspond to more than one LGA. In these cases, the SDB uses the appropriate ABS 2011 ASGC Correspondence file to allocate the postcode by determining that the LGA which receives the highest percentage of population for a particular postcode will receive all the data for that postcode.

Main Language

Main Language refers to a migrant’s recorded main language in the SDB. In the SDB there are approximately 300 different languages recorded. Main Language data is obtained from a number of different sources. For migrants who enrol with the Adult Migrant English Program (AMEP) after arrival in Australia, main language data comes from the AMEP Reporting and Management System (ARMS) database. Main Language is not recorded for all migrants in the SDB. It may be missing for portions of migrants in the Skilled and Family migration streams. However, this variable is captured well for the Humanitarian migration stream, particularly for more recently arrived humanitarian entrants.

English Proficiency

English Proficiency (EP) relates to a migrant’s level of spoken English. This information is available only for migrants aged five years and over at the time of visa grant. EP data is collected from various sources depending on the migrant’s visa Migration Stream. This can include formal English tests or self-assessments. Updated EP data is recorded from ARMS for migrants who enrol in the AMEP after arrival in Australia. Reporting on EP may result in a high proportion of ‘not stated’ results, particularly for the Skilled and Family Migration Streams. However, Humanitarian Migration Stream entrants tend to have more complete records for EP.

Country of Birth

Country of Birth (COB) refers to the country in which a migrant was born. COB is recorded by the DIBP on a mandatory basis for every person who is involved in a visa application.


Gender information is collected from migrants when completing a visa application.

Migration Stream

A Migration Stream is a collection of related visa subclasses, grouped together by their purpose of entry. At present there are four primary migration streams - Skilled, Family, Humanitarian and Other. Migration Stream is often also referred to as the visa stream.

Age Band

Age band of migrants based on Age at Extract.

The date of arrival range for the Settlement Data Extract is between 01 July 2011 and 04 July 2016 (latest data).