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Canberrans younger than your average Aussie

The 'average' Canberran is a 34-year-old woman working as a general clerks.

The 'average' Canberran is a 34-year-old woman working as a general clerks. Photo: Michel O'Sullivan

Canberrans thinking they lead just an average life should spare a thought for all the 34-year-old women working as general clerks in the ACT – they’ve just been named the actual “average” Canberra citizen.

But never content to be too average, Canberra’s average person is the second youngest of all the states and territories, and the only average person to be working a desk job.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics released their profiles of the average Australians as part of their Social Trends series on Wednesday.

According to the data, a compilation of 2011 census statistics, the average Australian is a 37-year-old woman who works as a sales assistant and was born in Australia.

“She speaks only English at home and belongs to a Christian religion, most likely Catholic,” the report said.

“She is married, and lives with her husband and two children (a boy and a girl aged nine and six) in a separate house with three bedrooms and two cars in a suburb of one of Australia's capital cities. They have lived in that house for at least five years, and have a mortgage where they pay $1800 a month.

“She has a Certificate in Business and Management, and drives to her job as a sales assistant, where she works 32 hours a week. She also does unpaid work around the house for five or more hours a week.”

Despite the statistical averages, the ABS also said that no single Australian actually met all the criteria to be classified as truly average on census night, which reflects a growing diversity across the nation.

The profile of the average Australian has changed markedly over the past 100 years. In 1911, the average Aussie was a 24-year-old Anglican male farmer - 50 years later, in 1961, he was a 29-year-old clerk.

On a state-by-state breakdown, the average Canberran is the second-youngest at 34, behind the average Northern Territorian who is a 31-year-old male.

The ACT is also one of just three states where the average job is not as a sales assistant. The average Northern Territorian is in the defence forces, and the average Western Australian is a 36-year-old male truck driver.

Do you fit the bill as an 'average' Canberran? We'd love to hear from you - get in touch with us here, by email, or leave a comment below

11 comments so far

  • I'm not quite average. Not 34, but female and working as a "clerk". I'm 49, female, work in the APS, 4 children under 15, working an average 45 hours per week in the office, plus unpaid work at home and taxi driver for children, rides a bike to work.

    Commenter
    Not quite average Canberran
    Date and time
    April 10, 2013, 1:59PM
    • I'm 24, female, work for a private company. 38 hours a week. No kids, not married. Live in a sharehouse with others the same age/similar jobs.

      Commenter
      hippydippy
      Location
      Canberra
      Date and time
      April 10, 2013, 3:40PM
      • I'm definitely not an average Canberrian. I'm 23 years old, female, working as analyst. Married with no children. Working an average 38 hours a week in an office. Plus 7+ hours of unpaid work at home (home-made, healthy and fresh meals are a must!)

        Commenter
        Sweet as honey
        Location
        Canberra
        Date and time
        April 10, 2013, 4:00PM
        • Hmm close to being the average but older than 34. I do a lot more hours in the office and certainly more than 5 hours managing the family and housework outside of work. In fact, that's at least a second job.

          Commenter
          WorkingMum
          Location
          Canberra
          Date and time
          April 10, 2013, 4:16PM
          • I've never lived in a town so self conscious of who they are. Why is it even important to define 'the average Canberran'. What's at the heart of this question?

            Commenter
            Gerry
            Date and time
            April 10, 2013, 4:22PM
            • Agreed. It is one of the things you notice most when you move back from elsewhere. People are so obsessed with defining who they are here and trying to pretend Canberra has the same things as other cities. It is precisely the things Canberra does have that other cities don't have that makes it a good place to live. The sooner people stop trying to compete with other places and just be themselves the better..

              Commenter
              benjamin.garden1
              Location
              Campbell
              Date and time
              April 10, 2013, 5:10PM
          • What is unpaid work in the home??? Do you mean the chores?
            I cant stand when people include normal things such as cooking,cleaning or caring for children as work?? We all do chores etc regardless of what we do with the rest of our time..
            Chores are not work... they are part of life.
            End rant..
            (many people also work fulltime and raise chilren and keep a house clean... its not work its life)

            Commenter
            ME....
            Date and time
            April 10, 2013, 4:30PM
            • it's called 'house work'

              Commenter
              BB
              Location
              Canberra
              Date and time
              April 11, 2013, 8:46AM
          • So there is no actual person who meets all those criteria ??

            I am doubtful. I bet there is at least one.

            Commenter
            enno
            Location
            sydney
            Date and time
            April 10, 2013, 5:42PM
            • Hamish Blandudder, "We're all individuals..."
              Chorus, "I'm not..."

              Commenter
              Indy
              Date and time
              April 10, 2013, 7:35PM

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