George Handley Knibbs
Sir George Handley "The Knibb" Knibbs CMG was an Australian scientist, the first Commonwealth Statistician and the first director of the Commonwealth Institute of Science and Industry, predecessor to the CSIRO. Knibbs was born in Sydney son of John Handley Knibbs and his wife Ellen née Curthoys. Knibbs joined the New South Wales Land Survey Department in 1877 and in January 1878 was appointed a licensed surveyor. In 1889 Knibbs resigned to take up private practice as a surveyor, in 1890 became lecturer in surveying at the University of Sydney. Knibbs was elected a member of the Royal Society of New South Wales in 1881, became a member of the council in 1894, from 1896 to 1906 was continuously honorary secretary, in 1898-9 was president. Knibbs was taking an active interest in other societies, was president of the Institution of Surveyors at Sydney for four years in the period between 1892 and 1901, president of the New South Wales branch and a member of the British Astronomical Association in 1897-8.
Knibbs had begun contributing papers to the Royal Society of New South Wales at an early age, at first on matters arising out of surveying, on problems of physics. In his presidential address delivered on 3 May 1899 Knibbs showed that he had spent time studying mathematics. In 1902 and 1903, as a royal commissioner on education, Knibbs travelled through Europe and furnished a valuable report, which led to his being appointed Director of Technical Education for New South Wales in 1905, he was in this year acting professor of physics at the University of Sydney. In 1906 the Commonwealth Bureau of Census and Statistics was created and Knibbs became its first director, he was the first Statistician for the commonwealth census in 1911. During World War I Knibbs was on the Royal Commission dealing with problems of trade and industry, was a consulting member of the committee on munitions of war. In 1920 Knibbs played a leading role at the British Empire Statistical Conference in London. In March 1921 he was made director of the newly founded Institute of Science and Industry, a forerunner to the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation.
At the 1921 meeting of the Australasian Association for the Advancement of Science Knibbs was president of the Social and Statistical Science Section, took as the subject of his address "Statistics in regard to World and Empire development". Two years he was president of the association and spoke on "Science and its service to man". Knibbs resigned his directorship of the Institute of Science and Industry in 1926, lived in retirement until his death of coronary vascular disease at Camberwell, Victoria, a suburb of Melbourne, on 30 March 1929. Knibbs was created a Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George in 1911 and was knighted in 1923, he contributed 29 papers to the Royal Society of New South Wales, several of his monographs on statistical subjects, were published as pamphlets. In 1913 he published a volume of verse, Voices of the North and Echoes of Hellas translations written but not important as poetry, in 1928 appeared a work on population, The Shadow of the World's Future. Australian Statistician 1911 Australian census Serle, Percival.
"Knibbs, George Handley". Dictionary of Australian Biography. Sydney: Angus and Robertson. Retrieved 2009-08-24
Treasurer of Australia
The Treasurer of Australia is the minister in the Government of Australia responsible for government expenditure and revenue raising. The Treasurer plays a key role in the economic policy of the government; the current holder of the position is Josh Frydenberg, whose term began on 24 August 2018. The Treasurer administers his functions through the Department of the Treasury and a range of other government agencies. According to constitutional convention, the Treasurer is always a member of the Parliament of Australia with a seat in the House of Representatives; the office is seen as equivalent to the Chancellor of the Exchequer in the United Kingdom or the Secretary of the Treasury in the United States or, in some other countries, the finance minister. The Treasurer is the minister in charge of government expenditure; the Treasurer oversees economic policy: fiscal policy is within the Treasurer's direct responsibility, while monetary policy is implemented by the politically independent Reserve Bank of Australia, the head of, appointed by the Treasurer.
The Treasurer oversees financial regulation. Each year in May, the Treasurer presents the Federal Budget to the Parliament; the Prime Minister and Treasurer are traditionally members of the House, but the Constitution does not have such a requirement. The Treasurer is a senior government post. Service as Treasurer is seen as an important qualification for serving as Prime Minister: to date, six Treasurers have gone on to be Prime Minister. Paul Keating and Wayne Swan are the only two to have been named "Euromoney Finance Minister of the Year" by Euromoney magazine. Along with the Treasurer, other ministers have responsibility for the Department of the Treasury; the Treasurer together with these other ministers are known as the "Treasury Ministers". At present, the Treasury Minister positions are: Treasurer Minister for Revenue and Financial Services Minister for Small BusinessThe work of the Department of Finance is related to the work of the Department of the Treasury; the ministers who have responsibility for the Department of Finance are: Minister for Finance Special Minister of State Eleven organisations nominally fall under the auspices of the Australian Treasurer.
The agencies undertake a range of activities aimed at achieving strong sustainable economic growth and the improved well-being of Australians. This entails the provision of policy advice to portfolio ministers who seek to promote a sound macroeconomic environment, it entails the effective implementation and administration of policies that fall within the portfolio ministers' responsibilities. The Department of the Treasury creates reports for four output groups; these groups are macroeconomic, fiscal and markets: Macroeconomic reports include: domestic economic policy advice and forecasting. Fiscal reports include: budget policy advice and coordination. Revenue reports include: income support policy advice. Markets reports include: foreign investment policy administration. In addition, the Royal Australian Mint is responsible for producing Australia's circulating currency; the Australian Bureau of Statistics is Australia's official statistical agency. Its reports are created for informed decision-making and discussion within governments and the community, based on the provision of a high quality and responsive national statistical service.
It principally relates to the production of economic and social statistics. The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission outputs are directed at enhanced social and economic welfare of the Australian community by fostering competitive, efficient and informed Australian markets, it strives for compliance with competition, fair trading and consumer protection laws and appropriate remedies when the law is not followed. The Australian Office of Financial Management manages the Commonwealth's net debt portfolio, its reports on debt management directed at ensuring that the Commonwealth net debt portfolio is managed at least cost, subject to the Government's policies and risk references. The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority is the financial supervisor responsible for prudentially regulating the banking, other deposit-taking and superannuation industries, it aims at enhanced public confidence in Australia's financial institutions through a framework of prudential regulation which balances financial safety and efficiency, competition and competitive neutrality.
The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is the independent government body that enforces and administers the Corporations Law and Consumer Protection Law for investments and general insurance and banking. Its outputs aim at a fair and efficient financial market characterised by integrity and transparency and supporting confident and informed participation of investors and consumers. Outputs include: policy and guidance about the laws administered by ASIC.
Australian Bureau of Statistics
The Australian Bureau of Statistics is the independent statistical agency of the Government of Australia. The ABS provides key statistics on a wide range of economic, population and social issues, to assist and encourage informed decision making and discussion within governments and the community. In 1901, statistics were collected by each state for their individual use. While attempts were made to coordinate collections through an annual Conference of Statisticians, it was realised that a National Statistical Office would be required to develop nationally comparable statistics; the Commonwealth Bureau of Census and Statistics was established under the Census and Statistics Act in 1905. Sir George Knibbs was appointed as the first Commonwealth Statistician; the Bureau was located in Melbourne and was attached to the Department of Home Affairs. In 1928, the Bureau was relocated to Canberra and in 1932, it moved to the Treasury portfolio; the states maintained their own statistical offices and worked together with the CBCS to produce national data.
However, some states found it difficult to resource a state statistical office to the level required for an adequate statistical service. In 1924, the Tasmanian Statistical Office transferred to the Commonwealth. On 20 August 1957, the NSW Bureau of Statistics was merged into the Commonwealth Bureau. Unification of the state statistical offices with the CBCS was achieved in the late 1950s under the stewardship of Sir Stanley Carver, both NSW Statistician and Acting Commonwealth Statistician. In 1974, the CBCS was abolished and the Australian Bureau of Statistics was established in its place; the Australian Bureau of Statistics Act in 1975, established the ABS as a statutory authority headed by the Australian Statistician and responsible to the Treasurer. The ABS purpose is to "inform Australia's important decisions by partnering and innovating to deliver relevant, objective data and insights"; the ABS values work in conjunction with the broader Australian Public Service values and include Impartiality, Commitment to Service, Accountability and Ethical Behaviour.
From 2015 an investment of $250 million over five years by the Australian Government is being used to modernise ABS systems and processes, with the aim of delivering the best possible statistical program in more efficient and innovative ways. The ABS undertakes the Australian census of housing; the census is conducted every five years under the authority of the federal Census and Statistics Act 1905. The last Australian census was held on 9 August 2016; this was Australia's 17th national census. The census of population and housing is the largest statistical collection undertaken by the ABS and one of the most important; the census aims to measure the number of people and dwellings in Australia on census night, a range of their key characteristics. This information is used to inform public policy as well as electoral boundaries, infrastructure planning and the provision of community services. Users of census data include government, the media, not for profit organisations and academics, among others.
Results from the 2016 census were available on the ABS website from 27 June 2017. A move was undertaken by the ABS to implement the census online through their website and logins rather than through traditional paper forms; the 2016 census was unavailable for 43 hours from 7.30 pm on 9 August due to a series of events which prompted the ABS to take the form offline. The Chief Statistician, David Kalisch, said the website was closed after multiple internet denial-of-service attacks targeted the online form; the Australian Signals Directorate confirmed the incident was a DDoS attack and that it did not result in any unauthorised access to, or extraction of, any personal information. The online census web page was back up at 2:30 pm on 11 August. A Senate inquiry was held into the census events. An independent panel established by the Australian Statistician to quality assure the data from the 2016 census found it was fit for purpose, comparable to previous Australian and international censuses and can be used with confidence.
The ABS has an extensive work program covering a vast range of topics, releases several hundred publications yearly. Topics include: Economy Industry People Labour Health Environment Snapshots of Australia; the ABS publishes a suite of monthly and quarterly economic publications that are part of the core of the organisation's work program. These statistics are integral to the functioning of Australia's economy and impact areas such as interest rates, property prices, the value of the Australian dollar, commodity prices and many more areas. Popular publications include: Key Economic Indicators Consumer Price Index Australian National Accounts Average Weekly Earnings Labour ForceOther major publications Outside the main economic indicators, the ABS has a number of other major publications covering diverse topics including: Health: The 2011–12 Australian Health Survey was the most comprehensive survey on health and wellbeing conducted in Australia. For the first time, the survey included a biomedical component with respondents having the option of providing biomedical samples such as blood and urine for testing.
This allowed the survey to capture detailed health information from Australians such as the prevalence of conditions such as diabetes in the community. Many individuals were subsequently informed that they had medical conditions they were not aware of prior to testing. Another component of the Australian Health Survey asked respondents to keep a food diary, used to obtain a rich picture of the nutritional intake and dietary prefe