Notes on the data: Age distribution

Male population by broad age groups: 0-14, 15-24, 25-44, 45-64, 65+, 70+, 85+ years, 2015 ERP


Policy context:  In the 2011 Census, the estimated resident population of Australia was 21,507,717 people, of whom 10,634,013 (49.4%) were male [1]. Over the 25 years to 2006, increased migration compensated for declining fertility, where fertility reached an all time low in 2001 of 1.73 babies per woman (Total Fertility Rate). Smaller sized cohorts of younger people in the 2011 population pyramid compared with older age groups directly reflect this lower fertility. In 2011, the 5-9 year age group (born 2001-2006) contained 1.37 million people, compared with 1.54-1.66 million people in each of the age groups between 25 and 49 years.

Despite lower fertility over the period 1981-2006, there was a greater number of children in the age groups under 15 in 2011, compared with the same age groups in population pyramids from previous census years. For example, in 2011 there were 100,000 more children aged 5-9 years than in 1991. This is due to migration adding to the number of young adults in Australia. Many of these young migrants had children after arriving, and in some cases had brought children with them. The children of these migrants increased the total number of children in Australia compared with the level that would have been born in Australia had migration not occurred [1].

These trends have significant implications for the future planning and provision of services, especially in health, housing, welfare and education.


  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS). 100 years of Australian lives (population) - Reflecting a Nation: Stories from the 2011 Census, 2012-2013. (ABS Cat. no. 2071.0). Canberra: ABS; 2012.

Notes:  The Estimated Resident Population (ERP) is derived by applying the following adjustments to the usual residence Census counts:

  • removing overseas visitors who were in Australia on Census night from the Census counts;
  • adjusting the Census counts for undercounting using results of the Post Enumeration Survey;
  • including Australian residents who were temporarily absent overseas on Census night; and
  • backcasting the resulting estimates which relate to the earlier 9 August 2011 to 30 June 2011 using births, deaths and migration data.

Numerator:  Male population by broad age groups: 0-14, 15-24, 25-44, 45-64, 65+, 70+, 75+, 85+ years


Denominator:  Total male population


Detail of analysis:  Per cent


Source:  Compiled by PHIDU based on the ABS Estimated Resident Population (ERP), 30 June 2015.


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