Feature Article - FACTBase Bulletin 66 - Who is Perth?


The demographic make-up of Greater Perth continues to be shaped by a number of factors including economic opportunities, shifting social values, policy regimes and the region’s changing position. By examining data from both the 1947 and 2016 census periods, the Bulletin demonstrates how rapidly the region has transformed to become one of the major metropolitan regions of the Indian Ocean Rim.

A number of distinctive phases since the late 1940s have strongly influenced Perth’s population, namely the immigration and baby boom that occurred following the Second World War, the 1960s iron ore boom and the most recent twenty-first century resource boom.

The picture of a typical Perth resident helps to illustrate these changes. In 1947 we were younger, less culturally diverse, more religious and likely to own a home outright. Moving forwards to 2016 and we were much more diverse, more likely to have a mortgage and over 32% of us identified as non-religious.

The Bulletin reinforces the implications these transformation have for policy development and planning. Recognising and acknowledging the history of the region is vital in ensuring that Greater Perth continues to develop in a way that is unique, relevant and sustainable.

Other articles from Insight, October 2019 (view email newsletter):