Local Government Council Demographic Profiles

On this page will be found the output from a study undertaken in 2005. The study, titled the indicative impacts of population ageing on Australia's States, Territories and Local Government Areas, was part of an Australian Research Council-Linkage Grant. The linkage partners were the University of Tasmania, the Local Goverment Association of Tasmania (LGAT) and the Council for Economic Development of Australia (CEDA); the Principle Researchers were Dr Natalie Jackson (School of Sociology and Social Work) and Professor Bruce Felmingham (School of Economics).

The study resulted in set of demographic profiles, one for each of Tasmania's Local Government Councils, and a selection of overall (council by council) comparisons. They can be found below. However, users are advised that the projections on which the profiles are based have since been revised to take into account an improved migration and higher birth rate scenario. Overall, the projected data used for the study underestimated the actual population in 2004 by 2.0 per cent and in 2005 by 2.4 per cent. However the discrepancy differs by LGA, with (in 2005) 16 larger than projected, and 13 smaller. The 'data update' link below takes you to a comparison of the projection data used in the project, and actual (ERP) data, for 2004 and 2005. Users can also compare the projections with more recent ERP data (actual/observed numbers) in the Resources folder (see menu buttons)


Each individual profile begins with an 'Ageing Index' which gives that Council's rank out of 29 (there are 29 Local Government Councils inTasmania) in terms of its current percentage aged 65+ years. A rank of (for example) 6/29 means that council is currently Tasmania's 6th oldest, while a rank of 28/29 means the council is Tasmania's 28th oldest, or alternatively, its 2nd youngest. Importantly, these indices should not be taken to imply that younger LGAs have fewer ‘problems’ than older LGAs or vice-versa, but rather, that their issues and resource needs differ. Regions that are relatively more mature or youthful require resources and policies appropriate to those age structures.

Secondly each profile includes an index termed the 'Force of Ageing' (sometimes referred to as the 'Speed of Ageing'). This measure calculates the difference in the percentage of the population that is aged 65+ years at two points in time, in this case, 2004 and 2021, and divides the result by the number of years between the two observations. This process gives the average annual percentage point increase in the percentage aged 65+ years. An index of (for example) 0.63 means that the percentage aged 65+ years will increase at an average rate of 0.63 percentage points per year across the period, while an index of 0.11 means that it will increase at the rate of 0.11 percentage points per year. The higher the index, the faster the population is ageing.

Two other key indices are used: the 'elderly/child ratio', and the 'entry/exit' ratio.

Elderly/Child Ratio: This ratio compares the number of elderly (aged 65+ years) to the number of children (aged 0-14 years). A ratio of (for example) 0.6 means that there are six elderly to every ten children, while one of 1.2 means 12 elderly for every ten children; the higher the elderly/child ratio, the ‘older’ the population. There have never been more elderly than children in western (and probably any other) populations, so the projected cross over (to more elderly than children) is unprecedented, and will bring with it many implications for local government councils.

Entry/Exit Ratio: This ratio compares the number of people at labour market entry age (typically taken to be 15-24 years) to the number approaching conventional retirement age (55-64 years). A ratio of (for example) 1.2 means that there are twelve entrants for every ten exits, while one of 0.6 means six entrants for every ten exits; the higher the entry/exit ratio, the ‘younger’ the population. There have never been more exits than entrants in western (and probably any other) populations, so the projected cross over (to more exits than entrants) is unprecedented, and will bring with it many implications for local government councils.

COUNCIL PROFILES (click on link to download)     COUNCIL COMPARISONS

Total Tasmania                                            Percentage 65+ (MAP) and Speed of Ageing  (MAP )   

Break O Day                                                                In alphabetical order

Brighton                                                                        In rank order

Burnie                                                            Elderly to Children Ratios

Central Coast                                                                In alphabetical order

Central Highlands                                                          In rank order

Circular Head                                                  Labour Market Entrants to Exits

Clarence                                                                         In alphabetical order

Derwent Valley                                                                In rank order

Devonport                                                        Reproductive age population

Dorset                                                                              In alphabetical order

Flinders                                                                            In rank order

George Town                                                    Change in size

Glamorgan/Spring Bay                                                   In alphabetical order

Glenorchy                                                                        In rank order


Huon Valley


King Island




Meander Valley

Northern Midlands


Southern Midlands



West Coast

West Tamar