The Pastoral Research Office is an agency of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

The Pastoral Research Office has ongoing responsibility for:

  • Coordinating Catholic participation in the National Church Life Surveys (2001, 2006 and 2011).
  • Carrying out the National Catholic Census Project (1996, 2001, 2006 and 2011), including the dissemination of results to parishes and dioceses.
  • Carrying out and reporting the results of the National Count of Attendance (2001, 2006 and 2011).
  • Providing assistance to dioceses, Catholic Education Offices and other Catholic agencies in the understanding and use of NCLS and Census data.
  • Providing research and pastoral planning consultancy services to dioceses and Catholic agencies.

We also undertake additional projects from time to time. At present, these additional projects include

  • ‘Building Stronger Parishes’ (currently in operation)
  • Australian Catholic Mapping Online (currently in operation in association with Catholic Education Office, Melbourne)
  • ‘Catholics Who Have Ceased Attending Mass’ (2007)

The Office was established in 1996. Until 2003, it was located in Clayton, Victoria, on the premises of Corpus Christi College, the seminary for the dioceses of Victoria and Tasmania. It moved to the Fitzroy (Melbourne) campus of Australian Catholic University in February 2004.