The Living in Australia study

Welcome to the Living in Australia study for 2017!


Australia has become part of an international move to have a better understanding of the needs of its people. This type of knowledge is crucial for good decision making, planning and support for Australians. The Living in Australia study is designed to meet this need.

Having begun in 2001, the study is known as the Living in Australia study and is sometimes referred to in the media as the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia study (HILDA).

In this study we collect and analyse information from thousands of different families and individuals across Australia. We ask questions about life in Australia including your employment, family relationships, education and wellbeing. This allows researchers to find out, for example, how one area in your life can affect other areas and how people remain the same or change over time. It can also show us how external factors such as Government decisions and world events affect our lives.

Ultimately this study is a source of information to those making economic and social welfare decisions for all Australians.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your commitment to the Living in Australia study. This study is held in very high regard as seen by extensive coverage in the media and its wide use in publications.

What's new in 2017?

It seems that every year we all face new challenges and demands that impact our daily lives. Some of these changes are small and insignificant, others are considerable - but all are important to the HILDA (Living in Australia) study.

The HILDA study continues to be a valuable source of information for policy makers and researchers concerned with improving the lives of all Australians. By participating in this unique Australian study you can contribute to a better understanding of life in Australia today.

This year we have a number of questions relating to your health, health-care visits, eating habits, physical activity and sleep. There are also some questions about health insurance, and your overall health status. This is a great opportunity to convey Australia’s healthy habits and health care needs to Australia’s policy makers.


In the next few weeks an interviewer from Roy Morgan Research, the research company conducting the interviews, will visit you to answer any questions you may have. Alternatively, please feel free to contact us.

contact us

New to the survey?

If you are visiting this website for the first time we hope you will have a look at some of the background information about the survey. We hope it contains all the information you need to know.

find out more

A message from Professor Stephen Zubrick, Senior Principal Research Fellow at the Telethon Kids Institute

“Over the last 20 years there has been a transformation in available longitudinal information about Australian families and their economic and social circumstances. The HILDA survey is one of the primary contributors to this transformation and represents one of the premiere sources of reliable and relevant information about how Australians are making their way in a rapidly changing world.

The influence of findings based on HILDA is impressive and their reach is exceptional. How is Australia faring in addressing economic inequality? How do families balance their time and money in meeting the demands of family and work? What are the changes that have occurred and are occurring in Australia’s use of causal employment? What has been the impact of negative gearing and what are the implications of changing how this is regulated? What is the basis of happiness and life satisfaction? Are more Australians able to choose a life they value and to contribute socially, economically and civically?

Whether one looks across social science, government policy development, contemporary media, or whether one looks nationally or internationally, HILDA data are used to inform critically important debates, initiatives, and evaluations that are central to how people live their lives. HILDA has increased our capacity to make major social and economic policy decisions based upon evidence.”Stephen Zubrick

Professor Stephen Zubrick
Stephen Zubrick currently holds a Professorial appointment in the 
Graduate School of Education at the University of Western Australia
and is a Senior Principal Research Fellow at the Telethon Kids Institute.