Information Access Survey 2019 cross-jurisdictional highlights

Last updated: 11 November 2019

Download the Information Access Study 2019

Background information on the Information Access Study

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner and the NSW Information Commissioner are members of the Australian Open Government Forum. This initiative was included under the Open Government National Action Plan. Woolcott Research was commissioned by participating jurisdictions to investigate the public’s awareness and experience of the right to access information held by government agencies in NSW, ACT, VIC, QLD, WA and the Commonwealth of Australia. The report compares results between jurisdictions.

Importance of having the right to access information

Three quarters of participants felt that their right to access information held by the government is ‘very’ or ‘quite’ important.

Figure 1

How important is it to you that you have a right to access government information?

Figure 1 shows a bar chart depicting the importance of having the right to access information. Long description follows.

Figure 1 — long text description

Total awareness of right to access information

The majority of the respondents were aware they had the right to access information held by a range of Australian Government agencies.

Figure 2

Did you know, you have a right to access information (including any of your personal information) held by the following agencies?

Figure 2 is a bar chart showing total awareness of right to access information. Long description follows.

Figure 2 — long text description

Total attempts to access information

Over one third had attempted to access information held by at least one in the range of Australian Government agencies.

18-34 years olds were more likely to have contacted at least one organisation, while those aged over 55 years were less likely to have attempted to access information.

figure 3

In the last 3 years have you tried to access information held by Australian Government agencies?

Figure 3 shows a bar chart depicting the total attempts to access information by state. Long description follows.

Figure 3 — long text description

Total success in attempting to access information

Most respondents who tried to access information were successful in doing so at least once.

Figure 4

Did you access the information successfully?

Figure 4 is a bar chart showing total success in attempting to access information. Long description follows.

Figure 4 — long text description

Long descriptions

The table below shows the results of survey that asked the following question:

How important is it to you that you have a right to access government information?

Importance of having the right to access information - percentage of respondents who said 'Yes'
 AUNSWACTVICQLDWA
Very important 52 51 51 53 47 48
Quite important 32 38 39 37 40 39
Not all that important 12 8 8 8 11 9
Not important at all 4 2 2 2 2 4

Back to Figure1.1

The table below shows the results of survey that asked the following question:

Did you know, you have a right to access information (including any of your personal information) held by the following agencies?

Total awareness of right to access information
 AUNSWACTVICQLDWA
%Yes 87 77 77 85 80 81

Back to Figure1.2

The table below shows the results of survey that asked the following question:

In the last 3 years have you tried to access information held by held by the Australian government.

Total attempts to access information
 AUNSWACTVICQLDWA
%nYes 37 40 15 35 37 37

Back to Figure1.3

The table below shows the results of survey that asked the following question:

Did you access the information successfully?

Total success in attempting to access inform
 AUNSWACTVICQLDWA
% Yes NA 80 60 75 70 91

Back to Figure1.4

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