FACTBase Bulletin 28 - Religious Diversity

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This FACTBase Bulletin, the first in a series examining the socio-cultural composition of Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney, examines changes in religious affiliation at the metropolitan and local government area levels for the period 2001-2011.

Key Findings
  • In contemporary Australia, Christianity remains the dominant religion, however these numbers are falling. Non-Christian groups such as Buddhists, Hindus and Muslims have enjoyed growth.
  • At the metropolitan level, both Sydney and Adelaide have experienced a decline in the proportion of Christian population while Perth and Melbourne have experienced growth.
  • Within Perth at the local government level, there is an outer-suburbanisation of minority religious groups.
  • When compared to the local government areas of other Australian cities (Adelaide, Sydney and Melbourne), Perth’s local government areas ranked in the lowest two quantile ranking for religious diversity.
  • There are various social and political implications associated with changes in religion demographics within a geographical region, such as oppositional community attitudes and tensions.
  • Policymakers need to incorporate the concept of cultural diversity more explicitly within their policy thinking, practices and documents.
Acknowledgement of Country

The Committee For Perth acknowledges the traditional custodians throughout Western Australia and their continuing connection to the land, waters and community. We pay our respects to all members of the Aboriginal communities and their cultures; and to Elders both past and present.