Tom Wilson

Tom Wilson
University of Melbourne | MSD · Melbourne School of Population and Global Health

PhD

About

176
Publications
37,670
Reads
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Introduction
I am an applied demographer focusing mostly on population projections, household projections, indirect estimation, migration analysis, very elderly populations, educational demography, LGBTIQ demography, and local and regional population trends.

Publications

Publications (176)
Article
Full-text available
Small area population forecasts are widely used by government and business for a variety of planning, research and policy purposes, and often influence major investment decisions. Yet, the toolbox of small area population forecasting methods and techniques is modest relative to that for national and large subnational regional forecasting. In this p...
Article
BACKGROUND: Cohort-component models incorporating directional migration are conceptually robust demographic models which are widely employed to forecast the populations of large subnational regions. But they are difficult to apply at the local area scale. Simpler models, such as the Hamilton-Perry model, have modest input data requirements and are...
Article
Generating accurate small area population forecasts is vital for governments and businesses as it provides better grounds for decision making and strategic planning of future demand for services and infrastructure. Small area population forecasting faces numerous challenges, including complex underlying demographic processes, data sparsity, and sho...
Article
Full-text available
The generational economy—which is that aspect of the economy that pertains to the economic activities of, and the economic relationships between, different ages and generations—can be evaluated on the basis of a number of different criteria. The most critical of these include the financial sustainability of the generational economy, the intergenera...
Article
Full-text available
Small area population forecasts are widely used across the public and private sectors, with many users requiring forecasts broken down by sex and age group. The preparation of small area age-sex population forecasts across a whole country or State with a multiregional cohort-component model is usually a time-consuming and expensive task. It involve...
Article
This short article describes how the mobility restrictions and lockdowns associated with COVID-19 affected internal migration patterns in Australia. https://www.gtav.asn.au/products/interaction-2021-pdf
Chapter
The future of Australia’s population by birthplace composition according to the four specified projection scenarios is presented in this chapter. In all scenarios the overseas-born population composition becomes less Europe-born and more Asia-born and more Africa & Middle East-born. The changing size and age-sex structure of these populations is il...
Chapter
This chapter summarises the key points of the research, notes some of the benefits of a large and diverse migrant population, and describes policy challenges which lie ahead. These include measures to avoid economic and geographic segregation, prevent discrimination, and manage public opinion. We also mention some of the limitations of our study.
Chapter
This chapter describes the population projection modelling, including details of the birthplace-specific cohort-component model, the birthplace categories chosen, input data estimation, adjustment and smoothing, and projection assumptions. It summarises the main features of the four main projection scenarios, which are Pre-COVID Trends (assuming a...
Chapter
This section presents summary profiles of the Australian population by country of birth according to the Pre-COVID Trends scenario. There are three sections. The first section presents profiles for the Australian population as a whole, the Australia-born population and the overseas-born population. The second section presents profiles for 26 birthp...
Chapter
This chapter presents a brief overview of past international migration trends and policies, and their effect on the growth and diversity of Australia’s population. It covers the post-World War Two migration schemes, the dismantling of the White Australia Policy, and the increasing diversity of migrant origins.
Preprint
Full-text available
Small area population forecasts are widely used across the public and private sectors, with many users requiring forecasts broken down by sex and age group. The preparation of small area age-sex population forecasts across a whole country or State with a multiregional cohort-component model is usually a time-consuming and expensive task. It involve...
Article
The ‘M4’ forecasting competition results were featured recently in a special issue of the International Journal of Forecasting and included projections for demographic time series. We sought to investigate whether the best M4 methods could improve the accuracy of small area population forecasts, which generally suffer from much higher forecast erro...
Method
Simple Excel iterative proportional fitting function, with example. Click on the DOI link to download from figshare.
Article
Full-text available
The need for subnational population statistics by sexual identity is being increasingly recognised for a variety of service delivery, analysis, and policy purposes. However, such statistics are rarely produced by statistical offices or researchers. The aims of the paper are to describe a new method for calculating subnational estimates of the popul...
Article
Full-text available
BACKGROUND: Attitudes to sexual minorities have undergone a transformation in many Western countries in recent decades. With much greater public acceptance, and an increase in policies and legislation to support equality and outlaw discrimination, the need for population statistics on sexual minority populations has grown. However, such statistics...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This bibliography lists English-language publications on school enrolment forecasting and modelling methods. Its scope covers academic journal articles, publicly available conference papers, theses and technical reports. It excludes presentation slides and regular consulting reports presenting enrolment projections for schools and school districts...
Article
Until the 1970s the Asia-born population of Australia remained small due to the racist White Australia Policy which denied entry to non-Europeans. Following its abolition in the early 1970s, Asian immigration progressively intensified, and in 2016 the Asia-born population of the country reached a total of 2.7 million, though the older population ag...
Article
The impact of COVID-19 has been massive and unprecedented, affecting almost every aspect of our daily lives. This paper attempts to quantify the impact of COVID-19 on the future size, composition and distribution of Australia’s population by projecting a range of scenarios. Drawing on the academic literature, historical data and informed by expert...
Article
Australia’s population is growing, ageing and exhibiting increasing heterogeneity with respect to birthplace and ethnic composition. Yet, little is understood about the levels of English language proficiency among the next generation of older migrants in Australia. Utilising a modified cohort-component model incorporating detailed language proficie...
Article
Full-text available
Background: There are surprisingly few resources available which offer an introductory guide to preparing a national population projection using a cohort-component model. Many demography textbooks cover projections quite briefly, and many academic papers on projections focus on advanced technical issues. Aims: The aim of this paper is to provide a...
Preprint
Full-text available
Small area population forecasts are widely used by government and business for a variety of planning, research and policy purposes, and often influence major investment decisions. Yet the toolbox of small area population forecasting methods and techniques is modest relative to that for national and large subnational regional forecasting. In this pa...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused extensive disruption to economies and societies across the world. In terms of demographic processes, mortality has risen in many countries, international migration and mobility has been widely curtailed, and rising unemployment and job insecurity is expected to lower fertility rates in the near future. This paper at...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: There are surprisingly few resources available which offer an introductory guide to preparing a national population projection using a cohort-component model. Many demography textbooks cover projections quite briefly, and many academic papers on projections focus on advanced technical issues. Aims: The aim of this paper is to provide a...
Article
Full-text available
Many of the European migrant populations which settled in Australia in the three decades after World War Two are now much older, and their aged care and health care needs are changing. While there is a considerable literature on individual aspects of ageing in many migrant groups (particularly as it pertains to culturally appropriate aged care), li...
Preprint
The need for subnational population statistics by sexual identity is being increasingly recognised for a variety of service delivery, analysis, and policy purposes. However, such statistics are rarely produced by statistical offices or researchers. The aims of the paper are to describe a new method for calculating subnational estimates of the popul...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: The aim is to present updated estimates of the size of Australia’s sexual minority adult population (gay, lesbian, bisexual, and other sexual minority identities). No estimate of this population is currently available from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, and very little is available from other sources. We obtained data on sexual mi...
Article
Full-text available
The Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population more than doubled in size between 1996 and 2016. Growth was highest in urban areas and lower in rural and remote areas. An important contributor to growth was identification change, whereby individuals report their Aboriginal status differently over time. Official population projection...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Studies have shown how births exhibit seasonal patterns, with peaks and troughs in particular months and seasons. Most of this literature focuses on national-level patterns mainly in countries of the northern hemisphere. Objective: The aim of the paper is to describe key features of contemporary birth seasonality at a subnational scale...
Preprint
BACKGROUND: Attitudes to sexual minorities have undergone a transformation in many Western countries in recent decades. With much greater public acceptance, and an increase in policies and legislation to support equality and outlaw discrimination, the need for population statistics on sexual minority populations has grown. However, such statistics...
Article
Full-text available
We measure the empirical distribution of the accuracy of projected population in sub-national areas of England, developing the concept of ‘shelf life’: the furthest horizon for which the subsequent best estimate of population is within 10% of the forecast, for at least 80% of areas projected. Since local government reorganisation in 1974, the offic...
Article
Full-text available
Australia is among the countries most exposed to natural hazards, particularly wildfire, cyclones, floods and heat waves. Natural disasters are expected to increase in frequency and severity as climate changes. For some people, the increase in risk from these disasters is a reason to move away from certain places or avoid others. Contemporary migra...
Article
Full-text available
Australia’s population at the highest ages is growing rapidly, driving increasing demand for a whole range of services often required at advanced ages. Unfortunately, official population statistics tend to become less accurate as age increases, especially in the centenarian ages. The aims of the paper are to (i) describe the growth of Australia’s p...
Preprint
Full-text available
Australia's population at the highest ages is growing rapidly, driving increasing demand for a whole range of services often required at advanced ages. Unfortunately, official population statistics tend to become less accurate as age increases, especially in the centenarian ages. The aims of the paper are to (i) describe the growth of Australia's p...
Article
Full-text available
In recent years, Australia’s older population (aged 65 and over) has been growing rapidly, accompanied by a shift in its country of birth composition. Although a great deal of research has been undertaken on past and current aspects of Australia’s migrant groups, little attention has been paid to future demographic trends in older populations. The...
Preprint
Full-text available
The impact of COVID-19 has been massive and unprecedented, affecting almost every aspect of our daily lives. This paper quantifies the impact of COVID-19 on the future size, composition and distribution of Australia's population by projecting a range of scenarios. Drawing on the academic literature, historical data and expert opinion, three scenari...
Preprint
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused extensive disruption to economies and societies across the world. In terms of demographic processes, mortality has risen in many countries, international migration and mobility has been widely curtailed, and rising unemployment and job insecurity is expected to lower fertility rates in the near future. This paper at...
Article
Full-text available
The study of immigrant population change is hindered by data sources that capture international migration flows separately from other demographic process and population stock data. In this paper, we illustrate this by gathering detailed demographic data and estimates for the Australia-born population and 18 immigrant populations in Australia, accor...
Article
Full-text available
Model migration age schedules have proved valuable to demographers for a range of applications for over 40 years. The original Rogers-Castro curve has been extended over time to include a retirement curve, a post-retirement curve, and a student peak. With demographic analyses extending to higher age groups than in the past due to population ageing,...
Article
Full-text available
The size and composition of the Australian population has shifted since the dismantling of the discriminatory White Australia Policy during the 1970s, yet its immigration system and border control remain highly regulated. Despite this, detailed information about the specific locations that immigrants arrive to or depart from within Australia are no...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives : To assess levels of numerical, structural, timing and spatial aspects of ageing of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander population. Methods : Population projections for 15 Australian regions were created by a multi‐state cohort‐component model. Results : The older (45‐plus) population grew from 29,815 in 1986 to 167,259 in 2016. I...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Most studies of population ageing apply traditional ageing measures, such as the number or percentage of the population aged 65 and above. In the context of gradually improving health and mortality at age 65, the use of a fixed age cutoff to define 'older age' needs to be revisited. Aim: The aim of this paper is to reassess the extent...
Preprint
Model migration age schedules have proved valuable to demographers for a range of applications for over 40 years. The original Rogers-Castro curve has been extended over time to include a retirement curve, a post-retirement curve, and a student peak. With demographic analyses extending to higher age groups than in the past due to population ageing,...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: To assess whether progress is being made towards reducing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander inequality in life expectancy and under-five mortality in the Northern Territory. Methods: Life tables for five-year periods from 1966-71 to 2011-16 were calculated using standard abridged life table methods with Aboriginal and Torres Stra...
Technical Report
Full-text available
The brief contains a summary of the latest ABS population statistics for the Northern Territory.
Article
After years of public debate about same‐sex marriage, the Australian Government put the issue to the electorate in the “Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey” in late 2017. The survey asked voters whether the law should be changed to allow same‐sex couples to marry. Nationally, 61.6% of voters responded “Yes.” But there were marked variations by el...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Population projections for Australia are produced by many organisations. They differ in projected population numbers, methods used, level of output detail, temporal extent, frequency of revision, quality and purpose, and they are not always easy to find. Aims: This paper provides a brief guide to many of the population projections prepa...
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Background. Population projections for Australia are produced by many organisations. They differ in projected population numbers, methods used, level of output detail, temporal extent, frequency of revision, quality and purpose, and they are not always easy to find. Aims. This paper provides a brief guide to many of the population projec...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This brief summarises new population figures published by the Australian Bureau of Statistics on 20th December 2018 for the Northern Territory.
Article
Full-text available
Background In recent decades, considerable research effort has been dedicated to improving mortality forecasting methods. While making valuable contributions to the literature, the bulk of this research has focused on national populations—yet much planning and service delivery occurs at regional and local scales. More attention needs to be paid to...
Preprint
Abstract. After years of public debate about same-sex marriage, the Australian Government put the issue to the electorate in the ‘Australian Marriage Law Postal Survey’ in late 2017. The survey asked voters whether the law should be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry. Nationally, 61.6% of voters responded ‘Yes’. But there were marked varia...
Article
Full-text available
Preprint
Full-text available
Abstract. Background: In recent decades considerable research effort has been dedicated to improving mortality forecasting methods. While making valuable contributions to the literature, the bulk of this research has focused on national populations – yet much planning and service delivery occurs at regional and local scales. More attention needs to...
Article
Full-text available
Australia has one of the largest percentages of immigrant populations in the developed world with a highly regulated system of immigration control and regular censuses to track their changes over time. However, the ability to explain the population change through the demographic components of immigration, emigration, and death by age and sex is com...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This brief summarises key aspects of the Northern Territory's demography reported in the latest ABS Australian Demographic Statistics publication.
Preprint
Full-text available
We measure the empirical distribution of the accuracy of projected population in sub-national areas of England, developing the concept of 'shelf life': the furthest horizon for which the true population remains within 10% of the forecast, for at least 80% of areas projected. Since local government reorganisation in 1974, the official statistics age...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This brief summarises some key points of relevance to the Northern Territory from the ABS publication "Estimates of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians"
Preprint
Subnational population forecasts form a key input to many significant investment and planning decisions – but such forecasts are often subject to considerable amounts of uncertainty, even in the short-run. This uncertainty is rarely quantified at the subnational scale, and little attention has been given to how uncertainty could be effectively comm...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Despite many decades of research on probabilistic methods, population forecasts with predictive distributions remain relatively rare amongst official population forecasts. Partly as a result, little attention has been given to communicating forecast uncertainty to users, especially non-technical users. The aim of this paper is to propose the adopti...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction: The population of Australia at the very highest ages is growing rapidly, like that of many countries. But official population estimates at these ages are of lower quality than those at younger ages, a problem shared by many countries which base their population estimates on census counts. This has implications for many uses of the dat...
Technical Report
Full-text available
This brief presents official population statistics for the Northern Territory for December 2017.
Article
Full-text available
Background Demographers have studied minority populations for many years, but relatively little attention has been paid to sexual minority groups. Population estimates for sexual minorities would be useful as denominators for a range of health and socioeconomic indicators, to monitor representation in employment, assist budget planning and inform t...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Population statistics for regions and local government areas of the Northern Territory.
Research
Full-text available
Abstract. Background: Demographers have studied minority populations for many years, but relatively little attention has been paid to sexual minority groups. Population estimates for sexual minorities would be useful as denominators for a range of health and socio-economic indicators, to monitor representation in employment, assist budget planning...
Article
Full-text available
Local area population forecasts have a wide variety of uses in the public and private sectors. But not enough is known about the errors of such forecasts, particularly over the longer term (20 years or more). Understanding past errors is valuable for both forecast producers and users. This paper (i) evaluates the forecast accuracy of past local are...
Technical Report
Full-text available
Nearly all official population statistics in Australia refer to the population usually resident in an area. But for many government, business and research uses it would be helpful to have data on the de facto population (the population actually present in an area at any one time) and how it varies seasonally. Unfortunately there are no statistics a...
Article
Full-text available
Local and regional population forecasts inform a wide range of planning and budgeting activities, including those concerning educational provision, transport services, health facilities, electoral redistricting, and business location decisions. Unfortunately such forecasts often prove to be quite inaccurate. The aim of this paper is to evaluate a s...