About the National Centre for Pastoral Research

The National Centre for Pastoral Research is an agency of the Australian Catholic Bishops Conference.

The National Centre for Pastoral Research 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

  • Journey to Plenary Council 2020 (ongoing)
  • Survey of Religious Congregations in Australia 2018 (ongoing)
  • Australian Catholic Bishops’ Youth Survey 2017
  • Understanding Religious Vocation in Australia Today (2014 – 2018)
  • Our Work Matters: Catholic Church employers and employees in Australia (2015 – 2017)
  • ‘Building Stronger Parishes’ (2009 – 2015)
  • What do Mass attenders believe? (2014)
  • What Makes People Feel They belong? (2011)
  • See, I am Doing a New Thing! – A Survey of Catholic Religious Institutes (2009)
  • Australian Catholic Mapping Online (currently in operation)
  • ‘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. In Jan 2018, the office moved to Canberra and is now located in Braddon.