Opportunity to increase sense of belonging for Australians

  • 22 September 2023

Auspire was pleased to attend the launch of the Scanlon Foundation Research Institute’s 2023 Australian Cohesion Index, which explores how we’re responding to current national and global challenges and highlights the key social cohesion issues emerging across Australia.

The 2023 report is the second edition of the Australian Cohesion Index, after its inaugural launch as part of the Mapping Social Cohesion 2021 study, which was established to provide a series of detailed surveys on social cohesion, immigration and population issues, with a prime objective being to understand the social impact of Australia’s increasingly diverse immigration program.

According to the newly released Australian Cohesion Index 2023, there are positive trends emerging in health and wellbeing of Australians, however more could be done to encourage national pride and sense of belonging.

The report found that young adults and the financially challenged experienced the biggest decline in belonging from 2008 to 2023, however overall, Australians feel a high level of trust in their fellow citizens, suggesting a strong sense of community. Pleasingly, recognition and support for diversity and multiculturalism is also growing, enhancing the social fabric of our nation.

“The Australian Cohesion Index provides an opportunity to look at how we are progressing as a nation towards a unified national identity by measuring that all important sense of belonging,” said Auspire CEO, Morgen Lewis. “At Auspire, we believe that this can be nurtured and developed through active citizenship. Plus, when Australians have trust in each other, we are more likely to participate in community and create connections.”

Auspire recently released its own research into the social and economic impact of community recognition programs, which reported that 81% of award recipients said they felt a stronger sense of belonging in their local community after receiving the recognition, suggesting a greater need to celebrate people when they positively contribute.

The Australian Cohesion Index is made up of data from multiple sources to provide understanding of Australia’s social landscape. The report is structured around four themes: trust in society, belonging and engagement, economic material wellbeing, and health and wellbeing.

Read the full report here and watch the recording of the launch below.

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