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Housing dream under threat Housing affordability worsened substantially throughout Australia and for most cross-sections of the Australian population between 1995–96 and 2005–06. This occurred against the backdrop of a housing boom, when the rise in house prices far outpaced the growth in incomes of everyday Australians. As the figure shows, average earnings increased by little more than twofold between 1986 and 2007, while house prices increased fivefold.

Trends in income and house prices since 1986 1989

600 Group household 11% 500

2004 Group household 11%

Still in parental home 12%

Still in parental home 19%

Single 9% Housing price index

Single 8% Sole 400 parent 3%

Couple only 24%

Sole parent 7%


100 1986

Couple only 32%

Couple with children 22%

200 Couple with children 42%

Average earmings index 1989







Source: Issue 19, AMP, NATSEM Income and Wealth Report.

Analysis undertaken for issue 19 of AMP. NATSEM Income and Wealth Report,

young people with lower incomes buying into

Overall, this report shows that it became

Wherever I lay my debt, that’s my home,

a rising market. If this trend continues, more

much harder for the average Australian to get

found that a household would need about

people are likely to have mortgages for a

into the housing market over the decade. As

seven to eight times annual after-tax income in

longer time and to retire before paying off their

to be expected, those worst affected were the

2005–06 to purchase outright a house costing

mortgages. One of the findings in this report

socioeconomically disadvantaged, such as the

typically $350 000. It would have needed

is that the proportion of people over 60 years

poor, the unemployed and sole parents.

only five times its after-tax income in 1995–96

of age with a mortgage more than doubled

when the same house would have cost about

from 1995–96 to 2005–06—from 4.2 per cent

$140 000. The rise in house prices is pushing

to 9.5 per cent. What this may mean is that

more and more households into ‘housing

retirees use some of their superannuation to

stress’. That is, more households today

pay off their mortgages, which eats into their

spend in excess of 30 per cent of their after-

retirement finds.

The report was prepared by Robert Tanton, Binod Nepal and Ann Harding and can be found at

tax income on housing costs such as rents, rates and mortgages than a decade ago. Associated with this has been a declining trend in outright home ownership. Between 1995–96 and 2005–06, outright home ownership (when the person owns the home and has no mortgage) dropped from 43 per cent to 34 per cent of households. On a positive note, however, total home ownership (owners both with and without mortgages) has remained almost stable at around 70 per cent. This means that more households today have mortgages than was the case a decade ago. The increased pressure faced by recent first home purchasers is reflected in the fact that nearly two out of three (62 per cent) are in housing stress. They are most likely to be

December 2007 Steering Committe meeting for the ‘Assessing the Social and Fiscal Implications of an Ageing Population’ project, being conducted by NATSEM and 12 Commonwealth agencies with Australian Research Council funding. Two international experts in dynamic microsimulation modelling addressed the Committee, Professor Ruth Hancock, now of the University of East Anglia (2nd from left) and Rick Morrison, from Human Resources and Social Development Canada (10th from left).

FROM HEAD THE DIRECTOR’S A DESK About 1000 Australians recently participated in the Australia 2020 Summit, with around 100 in the ‘Strengthening Communities, Supporting Families and Social Inclusion’ stream. The participants in this stream, of whom I was one, concluded after two days of very active debate that one of the key goals for the Rudd Government should be to develop a National Action Plan for Social Inclusion. It was expected that this plan would include evidencebased goals and measurable targets, against which the government could report progress annually. This proposal reflected the increasing realisation in Australia that social exclusion and the consequent waste of human potential are bad for the country and the economy, as well as for those individuals suffering from it. There has been a strong push in recent years towards early intervention and prevention, particularly for children. This has been prompted by research that shows that deprivation in one generation is likely to pass down to the next. A closely related proposal from the summit was to create a National Development Index, intended to be a much broader measure of wellbeing than such widely used measures as ‘gross domestic product per capita’. The intent is to capture different domains of wellbeing in a summary index, rather than focus on the total monetary income of the country. Again, this reflected the view that, while cash income is a very important resource for families, other factors are also important— such as affordable access to adequate health, education and childcare services or reduced inequalities in health status apparent for those from different socioeconomic groups. The above proposals have been put before the new federal government and, if the proposals are accepted in some form, there will be significant work to be undertaken to establish what any new social inclusion targets and measures should be. Similarly, establishing a summary index of national development that is broadly accepted by the community is not a simple task.



in developing performance measures for social inclusion.

Professor Ann Harding, Director of NATSEM, Professor Ann Sanson, University of Melbourne & Network Coordinator, Australian Research Alliance for Children & Youth, and Senator Ursula Stephens, Parliamentary Secretary for Social Inclusion and the Voluntary Sector, at the Australia 2020 Summit, Parliament House, Canberra, 19–20 April 2008.

However, recent international efforts provide some guidance for Australia. For example, the Innocenti Research Centre established by UNICEF recently published a report card on child wellbeing in rich countries. It provided a pioneering, comprehensive picture of child wellbeing considering six dimensions. Another inspiring example comes from the United Kingdom, where the Labour government has made considerable progress in developing indicators of social exclusion and reporting progress against those indicators. As then Prime Minister Tony Blair wrote in the preface to the most recent (2006) plan, Reaching out: an action plan on social exclusion. The plan reflected the government’s realisation that ‘About 2.5 per cent of every generation seem to be stuck in a lifetime of disadvantage. Their problems are multiple, entrenched and often passed down through generations’ (p. 3). Apart from the challenges that lie ahead for Australia in deciding on the exact nature of any possible social inclusion goals and measures, a further challenge is presented by data. We cannot tell if progress is being made towards a goal if we have no data to measure such progress by.

In early July we will be releasing the latest version of our child social exclusion index, which has been updated to incorporate the 2006 census data. This index is unusual in that it provides a small area or geographic measure, rather than a national measure, and is specifically targeted towards children. In August this will be complemented by analysis of whether child social exclusion became more or less geographically concentrated between 2001 and 2006. Also in July we will also be presenting new evidence about changes in such important indicators as joblessness and income at a small area level between the 2001 and 2006 Censuses—research that has emphasised again to me the need to complement the national picture with small area brushstrokes. And, finally, microsimulation modelling is likely to play a significant role in fleshing out some of the reform proposals put forward at the 2020 summit. One of the key recommendations emerging from the ‘Future of the Australian Economy’ stream, for example, was the need for an urgent review of state and federal taxes, which would include addressing negative interactions with the welfare system. The government has responded quickly to this suggestion, establishing in the recent May federal budget a comprehensive tax review headed by Treasury Secretary Ken Henry. But hard numbers about likely winners, losers and costs to government and consumers will be required before policymakers reach final decisions about possible tax reforms. Ann Harding

NATSEM’s research is expected to contribute in many areas of this debate. We regularly ‘mine’ the latest microdata releases from the Australian Bureau of Statistics to explore how the nation as a whole is progressing in such areas as housing stress, working poverty, and income inequality. But much of our recent research has also shown the importance of digging below the national summary averages, to look at how different geographic regions are faring. And it has become clear that a spatial or small area perspective will also be important

Professor Peter Shergold, Chief Executive of the Centre for Social Impact at the University of New South Wales, and Professor Ann Harding, Director of NATSEM, at the Australia 2020 Summit, Parliament House, Canberra, 19–20 April 2008.

RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS RSV IN AUSTRALIA Timely information about the impact of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) has emerged from a NATSEM project to estimate the burden of disease associated with RSV in Australia. Abbott Australasia commissioned NATSEM to undertake this independent research. RSV is a common, yet often unrecognised, cause of bronchiolitis and pneumonia in children, usually presenting during winter and early spring. Globally, an estimated 64 million cases of infection and 160 000 deaths a year are attributed to RSV. Possibly due to similarity in clinical presentation and overlap of season, RSV is often classified as influenza. There is an increasing volume of literature emerging from the USA and Europe of the burden associated with RSV. Yet in Australia, to date there has not been any effort to systematically collect information on the occurrence of RSV. Through this study Geetha Ranmuthugala has reviewed available literature to estimate the burden of disease attributed to RSV in Australia, and to scope the possibility of examining the cost effectiveness of primary prevention through vaccination. Out of the study the researchers identified a number of key points on RSV.

help in the implementation and assessment of preventive programs (including vaccination and indentifying infants most likely to benefit from current prophylaxis options). Further details will be available from the full report due to be released shortly.

eventually, researchers with better access to the model’s functions. Work has also begun on adding disability and health modules and developing the model’s base population, which is built on a 1 per cent sample of the 2006 Census.


Once the core demographic and economic

Intensive work has continued on the

functions are completed, the focus will shift to

development of APPSIM, NATSEM’s new

assessing and improving their individual and

dynamic microsimulation model. When

joint reliability and, finally, to adding in policy

completed, APPSIM will simulate the impact

levers, such as taxation and income support.

of Australian policy responses to projected

Over the past few months, the APPSIM

changes, such as population ageing.

team has benefited from having several

APPSIM is a five-year project, with funding

very experienced dynamic modellers visit

provided under an ARC (Australian Research

NATSEM—Mr Rick Morrison from Human

Council) linkage project, with partners from 12

Resources and Social Development Canada,

federal government departments. Additional

Professor Ruth Hancock from the University

funding to extend the project is being provided

of Essex and Mr Trevor Huddleston from

by the University of Canberra, and a further

the UK Department of Work and Pensions.

ARC grant has been awarded to enhance the

They shared their experiences in developing

model’s health capabilities.

and maintaining similar large and complex models, and provided valuable insights into

Work to date has focused on researching

these models being used internationally.

and constructing the core modelling structures

For information about APPSIM, please

needed to simulate Australian life cycles.

contact Professor Ann Harding by

Recently work has concentrated on

phone (02 6210 2780) or

incorporating labour force details, education


processes, earnings estimates, refining earlier RSV is highly contagious and strict infection control practice is important in hospital settings to minimise cross infection. Systematic data collection is necessary to

estimates of fertility and providing output


statistics. An initial interface for the model has

Much attention has been given to the likely

also been built, to provide developers and,

fiscal implications at the national level of Australia’s ageing population in a series of major government reports. Yet population

Key points on RSV with particular

• Prophylactic monoclonal antibody

relevance for Australia

therapy is recommended for high risk

• Between 118 045 to 226 028 cases

newborns and infants.

of RSV occur annually in Australia in children aged less than one year.

• It is estimated that up to 40% of hospital admissions for pneumonia

ageing will also have profound effects at local levels, with some areas of Australia likely to face strong demand for aged care services and declining demand for school facilities.

• There is only one monoclonal antibody product currently registered in Australia.

NATSEM is progressing well on research being undertaken as part of an ARC linkage project to develop needs-based planning

• While vaccine is available for influenza,

indicators for small areas and to examine the

and up to 90% of admissions for

there is still no vaccine that induces

likely characteristics and service requirements

bronchiolitis in Australia are due

active immunity in humans against

of households living within different local

to RSV.

RSV. A couple of vaccines are currently

areas in 20 years time. This project blends

being tested for clinical safety

NATSEM’s spatial microsimulation technology

and efficacy.

with additional census data, and is being

• The peak season in Australia is around July.

• The direct annual cost to the Australian health care system is estimated to be between $32 million and $62 million.

• Naturally acquired immunity is not long lasting.

conducted with the NSW Department of Community Services, the Victorian Department of Planning and Community Development and Victorian Department of

• No surveillance system is in place to

Education and Early Childhood, Queensland

systematically measure and examine

Treasury, the Queensland Department of the

RSV activity in Australia. NATSEM NEWS


RESEARCH HIGHLIGHTS Premier and Cabinet, the ACT Chief Minister’s Department and the Australian Bureau of Statistics as our partners. In 2007 a series of needs-based planning workshops were held in Canberra, Melbourne, Brisbane and Sydney, to allow government policymakers and planners to identify what needs-based planning indicators they would find most useful. In 2008 a number of variables from the ABS Census were made available on a trial basis to the linkage partners through an online mapping system. We hope to have other variables available to the public in the near future, including our child social exclusion indexes and our microsimulated data. Further inquiries about this research can be made to Rob Tanton by phone (02 6201 2769) or email: THE GEOGRAPHY OF ADVANTAGE AND DISADVANTAGE

The researchers and Chief Investigators (CIs) of the ARC-funded ‘Opportunity and Disadvantage’ project, in which the Australian Bureau of Statistics is also a research partner, attended a meeting on 29 April: (from left to right) Rebecca Cassells from NATSEM; CI Professor Hal Kendig from the University of Sydney, convenor of the ‘Ageing Well’ ARC research network; Dr Justine McNamara from NATSEM, CI Professor Fiona Stanley from the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research, convenor of the ‘Future Generation’ ARC research network; CI Dr Sharon Goldfeld from the Centre for Community Child Health; CI Professor Ann Harding from NATSEM; CI Robert Tanton from NATSEM; and CI Professor Bob Stimson from the University of Queensland, convenor of the ARC ‘Spatially Integrated Social Science’ network.

Small area measures of advantage and disadvantage are being developed by NATSEM and will be made widely available to researchers across Australia, under a five-year ARC-funded project. The project combines expertise from NATSEM and three of the ARC Research Networks. After the rapid rollout

Inquiries about research work focused on

the prices of these utilities. In addition, the

concession modelling can be directed to

department can estimate the revenue of utility

Quoc Ngu Vu by phone (02 6201 2790) or

suppliers under various concession scenarios.


All of these simulations can be generated by departmental staff via a user-friendly


interface—just by clicking and pointing for the

In December 2007 the STINMOD team

current year and for five years into the future.

released the latest source code and interface

disadvantage, by fusing the 2006 census XCP

NATSEM originally developed this static

versions of NATSEM’s static microsimulation

tables for small areas with the confidentialised

microsimulation model for the department in

model, identified as STINMOD07. STINMOD

unit record files from the 2002–03 and the

1997, and made improvements and updates

quantifies the distributional and revenue

2003–04 ABS Survey of Income and Housing

to the model in 2002 and 2005. The 2007

effects of changes in income tax and social

Costs. The new variables for statistical local

update incorporated new data from the 2007

security policy. Under the most recent

areas will be made available through the

Victorian Utility Survey to create new basefiles

agreement with the federal government

website of the ARC Research Network for

for the period 2006–07 to 2011–12. Also

agencies that commission the update and

Spatially Integrated Social Science.

incorporated were client-specified options

maintenance of STINMOD, NATSEM is

of the 2006 census data by the ABS, the project is currently concentrating on creating small area estimates of poverty and housing


concession and/or the type of recipient and

and improvements to the functionality of

now releasing one source code version of


the interface.

the model each year rather than two. This

In 2007 the Victorian Department of Human

The Victorian Concessions Model was further

Services commissioned NATSEM to again

extended to include ambulance services. This

update the Victorian Concessions Model. This

was done as part of a project commissioned

model allows the department to estimate the

by the Victorian Department of Treasury and

costs and the distributional impact of various

Finance to contribute to a review of the costs

concession scenarios that could apply to

associated with concession cards in Victoria.

four types of utilities—electricity, gas, water

As part of the work for Department of Treasury

and rates—within the Victorian households.

and Finance, NATSEM provided 15-year

Examples of the scenarios include changing

projections of concession cardholder numbers

the concession rates, the period of

and expenditure.


change has been made to better match the release of the model to the budget cycle work undertaken by the source code users. The single release also permits more time for NATSEM to undertake necessary quality assurance processes, particularly for the complex adjustments involved with government policy changes in each new version.

CONFERENCE HIGHLIGHTS In STINMOD07 the outyears basefiles were


created from the 2002–03 and the 2003–04

The 2nd General Conference of the International Microsimulation Association (IMA) will be held

ABS Survey of Income and Housing Costs.

in Ottawa, Canada, 8–10 June 2009. Please put this date in your diaries. The call for papers

These basefiles were updated to the latest

is expected in June 2008.

available demographic, administrative and other social and economic data, and cover the period December 2007 to June 2013.

If you are not already a member of IMA, you can join the announcements list to be kept up to date with all new developments.

An important enhancement of STINMOD07 is the incorporation of data on the population living in non-private dwellings. This population includes people in institutions such as homes for the aged and disabled derived from the 1 per cent household sample of 2001 Census. Several improvements to the interface version

NATSEM staff will soon be presenting


papers at two international conferences


and one national conference. For further


information about these papers, contact


the author(s) by phone (02 6201 2780) or email (hotline@natsem.canberra.

Authors: Riyana Miranti, Justine After the conferences have

McNamara, Robert Tanton & Mandy Yap

As part of the annual release the STINMOD

been held, the papers will be available

Do professional women in the cities

team provided an opportunity for the user

from NATSEM’s website

experience different rates of childlessness

group to meet and discuss the changes

to their counterparts living elsewhere?

made in this version and highlight ongoing


Research shows that fertility rates for

were also introduced with STINMOD07.

work on the model. This meeting was held in March 2008. The team is currently preparing the basefile for the next version of STINMOD. The source code version of STINMOD08 is due to be released in October and the interface version in November.

Australian Population Association Conference, Alice Springs, 30 June–3 July 2008 DEVELOPMENT OF A DYNAMIC MICROSIMULATION MODEL TO

Annie Abello, Quoc Ngu Vu and Alicia


Payne are the key researchers updating and


developing STINMOD. Technical support is


provided by Principal Research Fellow Richard Percival. Jeannie McLellan leads the project.

Authors: Laurie Brown, Ann Harding, Sophie Pennec, Heather Booth &

As well as being available to undertake

Karin Anstey

commissioned research work using the STINMOD source code version, NATSEM

NATSEM and the Australian National University

is able to provide access to the interface

are part of a larger research collaboration

version through a licence arrangement.

working to develop a dynamic microsimulation

To inquire about such a licence, contact

model as part of the DYNOPTA (Dynamic

Vu by phone (02 6201 2790) or email:

Analyses to Optimize Ageing) Project. The

model is being constructed to establish a

To inquire about commissioning research

demographic modelling infrastructure that

work, contact Jeannie by phone

can be used to simulate the health and social

(02 6201 2759) or email:

outcomes of the baby boomer and aged

cohorts and examine the impact of possible social and medical interventions to compress morbidity and optimise ageing in Australia over the next 20 years.

women with higher education are lower than for women less well educated. There is also evidence that professional women may have more difficulty combining work and family responsibilities, which then may result in lower fertility rates among these women. This paper examines childlessness, particularly among women in elite professional groups, by using three different Censuses—1986, 1996 and 2006. DEMENTIA-FREE LIFE EXPECTANCY IN AUSTRALIA Authors: Binod Nepal, Laurie Brown & Geetha Ranmuthugala With the rapid ageing of Australia’s population, dementia has become an important population health concern for the community and policymakers. It is estimated that more than 200 000 Australians are living with dementia. This paper estimates life expectancy with and without dementia among Australian males and females in later life. The analysis was performed by applying the life table technique, which integrates mortality and morbidity statistics to derive a single population health indicator. Observed prevalence rates were used to calculate life expectancy with dementia.





International Association for Research



in Income and Wealth 30th General



Conference, Slovenia, 24–30 August 2008


Authors: Linc Thurecht, Laurie Brown & Mandy Yap

Authors: Binod Nepal, Laurie Brown & Mandy Yap

Type-2 diabetes is a common, chronic health condition that imposes a significant burden


Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are

on affected individuals and significant costs

perhaps the most disadvantaged group in

on the health system. Within Australia it is

Australian society. The extent of disadvantage

estimated that more than one million people

experienced by the Indigenous population is

aged 25 years and over have the disease.

How are the rich faring in Australia? This

reflected in the statistics on a wide range of

Despite the significant burden and cost

paper examines the characteristics of the

social and economic indicators, particularly

associated with the disease, type-2 diabetes

top 10 per cent of the income spectrum and

the 17-year gap in life expectancy and low

occurs largely as a result of modifiable

looks at trends in their income and wealth

employment and income. The research

lifestyle factors.

over the 10 years from 1995–96 to 2005–06.

reported in this paper focuses on adults aged under 65. It compares life-time employment and labour income of Indigenous Australians with other Australians disaggregated by level of education. The study provides an insight on the socioeconomic gaps between Indigenous and other Australians and the benefits of attaining higher education. MODELLING DEMOGRAPHICS WITHIN APPSIM, THE NEW AUSTRALIAN DYNAMIC MICROSIMULATION MODEL Authors: Sophie Pennec & Bruce Bacon

This paper presents a population-based model that projects the changing age structure and risk profile of the Australian population over a 45-year period. The model provides policy developers with the capacity to evaluate the potential impact that a hypothesised prevention or intervention

Authors: Quoc Ngu Vu, Ann Harding & Richard Percival

It reveals some interesting changes in the characteristics of the top end, including that the wealthy in Queensland and Victoria are gaining ground on those in New South Wales. It also compares Australia with other European countries and finds that Australia ranks in the middle of the EU15 in its richness index.

program might achieve, including the relative cost and benefits of alternative strategies. European Network for Housing Research Conference, Dublin, 6–9 July 2008


As in most developed countries, Australia has


an ageing population. The change in the age


structure of the population will result in greater

FOR SMALL AREAS Canberra, 19 September 2008

demand for health services and aged care,

Authors: Rebecca Cassells, Justine

as these people reach the age range of high

McNamara & Robert Tanton

disability. Developing the capacity to examine

Research has shown that where and how a

the distributional effects of both demographic

child lives is a crucial aspect of their current

changes and policy changes is the goal of

and future wellbeing. This research looks

the new Australian dynamic microsimulation

at the spatial and demographic patterns

model (APPSIM).

of children living in housing disadvantage

The paper deals with the main features

in Australia.

of this new model, emphasising the core

Housing disadvantage is determined by

demographic modules and will describe

combining several indicators, including

some of the proposed innovative features

overcrowding, public housing and housing

of the new model (potentially a linked

stress, to form a housing disadvantage index

macrosimulation model that will be used to

for Australian children at a disaggregated

align key demographic and other processes

geographic level. Both the composite index

to external benchmark data).

and the individual indicators that are used

NATSEM is hosting a one day conference Creating socio-economic data for small

to create it are analysed to identify spatial differences in housing disadvantage for Australian children. As part of the index creation, innovative spatial microsimulation

areas: methods and outcomes, to showcase a broad range of examples of the latest developments in small area estimation and spatial microsimulation. Speakers will be presenting on the latest techniques and findings covering such examples as small area health, literacy, and poverty estimates. The program includes presentations on NATSEM’s spatial microsimulation models of poverty and disability. It will also feature Professor Mark Birkin from the University of Leeds on the MOSES spatial microsimulation model and its use in transport planning and Dr Kimberly Procter, also from the University of Leeds, on SimObesity, a spatial microsimulation model of small area childhood obesity.

techniques are used to produce synthetic estimates of housing stress in Australia

For further information, email

at a small area level, as this measure is

not otherwise available at a high level of spatial disaggregation.




NATSEM SEMINARS Statistics Social Statistics Group Seminar

Adjunct Associate Professor David Cullen,

Series, Canberra, 1 May 2008.

Executive Director, Health Policy Taskforce, Department of Health and Ageing, ‘The

microsimulation models: DYNACAN practices

Thiébaut, S, ‘Will healthy aging save the

and plans, Working Paper no. 8, NATSEM,

French medical public insurance system?’,

Canberra, March 2008. (WP8)

National Institute for Health and Medical

Morrison, T & Kelly, S, Superannuation—the right balance?, report prepared for CPA Australia, CPA, Australia, February 2008. (OP54)

Dr Mark Clements, National Centre for

in Quantitative Economics, Regional

Epidemiology and Population Health,

Centre for Disease Control, Institute for

Australian National University, ‘Modelling for

Public Economics, NATSEM, Canberra,

cervical cancer screening in the context of

26 March 2008.

HPV vaccination’, 2 April 2008. Mr Trevor Huddleston, UK Department of

I lay my debt, that’s my home: trends in


housing affordability and housing stress,


NATSEM Income and Wealth Report, AMP, Sydney, March 2008. (OP57) PRESENTATIONS AND PAPERS

Work and Pensions and the use of models in the policy process’, 21 April 2008. It contains all of NATSEM’s published reports and many of the presentations given by staff

government funds for Australia’s ageing

non-government organisations.

2008, Canberra, 19 February 2008. (P120)

Dr Philip Clarke, School of Public Health, University of Sydney, ‘Using utilities derived from the EQ-5D as predictors of outcomes in patients with type 2 diabetes’, 22 May 2008.

The sequence numbers listed with the publications above (e.g. OP 54 or P120) can be used to easily access that publication

Payne, A, ‘Honey I calculated the kids—costs

online. Simply type the sequence number in

of children in Australia in 2007’, presentation

the search engine in the online publications

to the ACT Branch of the Economics Society,

database to retrieve that entry.

NATSEM VISITING FELLOWSHIPS We are pleased to announce that the 2008 Visiting Fellowships have been won by:

Canberra, 27 February 2008. (no paper) Harding, A, ‘The financial future for

policy development in the UK Department of

can be accessed at our website

at conferences and to government and

Population Policy and Planning Conference

Work and Pensions, ‘Current and future

NATSEM’s publications database

Brown, L, ‘Prioritisation and distribution of population’, presentation to the Ageing

28 February 2008.

Research, National Research Centre

Tanton, R, Nepal, B & Harding, A, Wherever

1995–96 to 2005–06, issue no. 19, AMP.

financial implications of ageing for individuals,


Professor Mark Birkin from the University

governments and older people’, presentation

Are you interested in keeping up to date

of Leeds (who developed spatial

to the Home and Community Care (HACC)

on such topics as:

microsimulation models for the UK);

National Forum, Melbourne, 22 February 2008. (P119) Harding, A, ‘Effective tax rates in Australia

• income inequality

Dr Kimberly Procter, also of the University of Leeds (who developed the SimObesity

• wealth

spatial microsimulation model); and

today: an overview and some issues’,

• poverty

presentation to the Committee for Economic

• superannuation

of Waikato (who is part of a major

• distributional impacts of government

research project on Enhancing Wellbeing

Development of Australia (CEDA) conference, Canberra, 12 March 2008. (P121)

services Harding, A, ‘The challenge of creating sound

Dr Michael Cameron from the University

in an Ageing Society).

• changes to the tax–transfer system

NATSEM is now calling for applications

social policy: how microsimulation models can help policymakers’, presentation to the

• the future shape of Australian society?

international academics and professionals

If so, join NATSEM’s free email listing and

keen to further their research in the field

receive automatic notification of all new

of microsimulation. It is envisaged that the

NATSEM publications.

Visiting Fellow would normally spend around

Productivity Commission Seminar Series, Canberra, 8 April 2008. Harding, A, ‘Microsimulation, microdata,

two to eight weeks working at NATSEM

and income distribution’, presentation to the Mongolian Ministry of Social Welfare and Labour ‘Capacity Building in Performance Outcome Monitoring and Evaluation’ program

for two Visiting Fellowships in 2009 from

To join, email ‘subscribe’ to hotline@natsem.

on a mutually agreed area of research.

For further information go to

study tour to Australia, NATSEM, Canberra, 10 April 2008. Harding, A, ‘How ABS statistics underpin microsimulation models and social policy’, presentation to the Australian Bureau of NATSEM NEWS


NATSEM UPDATE NEW STAFF WELCOMED Anna Sutiyono joined NATSEM as Business Manager in January 2008. Prior to this she was the Business Manager (Marketing and International) in the Division of Development and International at the University of Canberra. Anna has responsibility for NATSEM’s

ABOUT NATSEM Lucie Marshall became NATSEM’s

The National Centre for Social and Economic

Administration Assistant in April 2008, after

Modelling, an affiliated research centre of the

graduating from the Australian National

University of Canberra, has an international

University with a Bachelor of Arts (Visual).

reputation as a centre of excellence for

Her duties include providing administrative

analysing microdata and constructing

support and assistance to research staff and

microsimulation models. Its work is funded

the Business Manager. She also assists the

through research grants and consultancy

Director of NATSEM, Professor Ann Harding.

income. For further information, log onto

financial management systems, assets and physical resources. She oversees the delivery of administrative support to the research staff and coordinates the human resource management aspects of the centre’s operations. Andrew Armstrong, a psychologist and social scientist, commenced with NATSEM as a Senior Research Officer in April 2008. He is investigating socioeconomic differentials in health and disability status using microdata analysis and microsimulation modelling. He is also examining possible distributional impacts of changes in government policy on individuals and households, the impacts of population ageing on the use and cost of health services and aged care, and trends in risk factors and


NATSEM aims to be a key contributor to

We recently farewelled Charlotte Copeland

social and economic policy debate and

and Julia Friedewald and thanked them for

analysis in Australia, by developing models of

their contributions to NATSEM.

the highest quality, undertaking independent

Sharyn Lymer has taken leave from her

and impartial research, and supplying valued

position as Senior Research Fellow after

consultancy services.

accepting an ARC Australian Postgraduate

In a large proportion of NATSEM’s research,

Award (Industry) PhD scholarship, supported

analysis typically begins by looking at

by NATSEM’s linkage partner, the Department

either the characteristics or the impact of a

of Health and Ageing. Sharyn’s award also

policy change on an individual household,

includes a NATSEM Top-Up Scholarship. Her

building up to the bigger picture by looking

APAI award is linked to the health modelling

at many individual cases through the use

research being undertaken by NATSEM in the

of large datasets.


health outcomes.

Ann Harding

Binod Nepal was awarded his PhD in Andrew has previously worked as a research


Demography from the Australian National

psychologist for the Australian Council for

(02) 6201 2780

University in December 2007. His thesis is

Educational Research, a researcher for the

titled ‘AIDS in Asia: population perspectives

Australian Institute of Family Studies and for

on HIV’. Congratulations go to Binod.

Jeannie McLellan Deputy Director

the Mental Illness Fellowship Victoria. Andrew

(02) 6201 2759

also spent four years tutoring at Swinburne

Other staff

University of Technology in the Faculty of

A full listing of NATSEM staff, their contact

Life Sciences.

details and profiles are available on

Yogi Vidyattama is now a Senior Research

NATSEM’s website:

Officer at NATSEM. He is a PhD candidate

in Economics at the Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National


University, Canberra, where he holds a Vice-

Phone: (+61 2) 6201 2780

Chancellor’s scholarship. His dissertation is


titled ‘The pattern of Indonesia’s provincial


economic growth’.

Post: Visit:

Economic and Social Research, University Dr Binod Nepal

assistant at the Research School of Pacific and Asia Studies, Australian National University (2005–2008), and was a tutor at the Crawford School of Economics and Governance, Australian National University.

EMPLOYEE OF THE QUARTER Congratulations go to Binod Nepal and Robert Tanton, joint winners for the October– December quarter 2007, and to Geetha Ranmuthugala and Riyana Miranti, joint winners for the January–March quarter 2008.



University of Canberra ACT 2601 Australia

Previously he worked at the Institute of of Indonesia (1999–2004), was a research

(+61 2) 6201 2751

170 Haydon Drive Bruce ACT 2617

NATSEM News - June 2008  

This issue features our major research since December 2007 and updates on our projects and models. It also includes a complete listing of ac...

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