• ABN

    Australian Business Number (ABN). An eleven digit number that identifies an Australian business.

  • Administrative Arrangements Order

    An order, issued by the Governor-General on advice from the Prime Minister, that formally states the subject matters dealt with by particular government departments and the legislation for which each minister administering a department is responsible. Administrative Arrangements Orders (AAOs) are published in the Commonwealth Government Notices Gazette.


  • Board appointment

    A person currently appointed to a job or position on a board.

  • Body

    Any department, listed entity, executive agency, statutory agency, statutory authority, statutory office holder, company, association, cooperative, partnership, trust or departmental function with distinct branding.


    • Principal bodies - bodies connected with government policies, purposes or services which are prescribed under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 and the related rules.
    • Secondary bodies - committees, councils, boards, statutory office holders, consultative bodies and working groups linked to the Australian Government.
    • Other bodies - bodies that the Government does not fully own but has significant influence over.

    Established By/Under: The legislation the body was created by/under or through an Administrative Arrangements Order (AAO), or through some other decision of Government.

    Learn more about Australian Government bodies.


  • Creation date

    The date on which the body was created or established.


  • External nominations

    An externally nominated appointment is an appointment made on the nomination of a state or territory government, a non-government body, another Commonwealth minister, or another portfolio. The nomination process could be either legislated or accepted practice.

    'Nomination panels' that provide reports to ministers recommending nominees are not classified as ‘a non-government body. The minister is the one who makes the recommendation to the Prime Minister for the appointment, therefore a panel recommendation is not an external nomination.


  • Gender equality reporting

    Guidelines for gender balance reporting of Australian Government boards. Not all appointments to all government boards are reportable. Boards that are within the scope of gender balance reporting are as follows:

    • bodies covered by the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act),
    • ministerial advisory committees,
    • review committees where the appointments are made by a minister or Cabinet, and
    • commonwealth statutory authorities.

    A list of the relevant entities that are subject to the PGPA Act can be found at:

    Within this subset of boards, only appointments that have some level of input or sign-off from particular representatives of the Government are included, that is:

    • the Prime Minister alone,
    • one or more Commonwealth Government ministers,
    • the Governor-General in Council, and
    • Cabinet.

    Gender balance reporting excludes appointments that are:

    • to a Commonwealth Court or Tribunal,
    • formally elected with no formal Government approval,
    • nominated by a third party with no formal Government approval,
    • of a particular office-holder to a particular board or committee required by legislation (ex-officio appointments),
    • appointed by an organisation without Government involvement,
    • nominated by a State or Territory Government without Commonwealth Government approval,
    • nominated by a government of another country without Commonwealth Government approval, or
    • acting appointments (appointments of six months or less).

    Reportable appointments must have a person filling the position during the period covered by the reportto be included.

    Employees engaged under the Public Service Act 1999 or other enabling legislation are not included unless the engagement is for the specific purpose of serving on a Commonwealth decision-making or advisory board, committee, council or similar.

    Boards that comprise only one person are not included; however, a board that has several members and only one member is reportable is included.

    New appointments are appointments made during the reporting period, which fulfil all of the criteria above but do not require the successful candidate to be formally working in the role on the final day of the reporting period . These do not include re-appointments.

  • Government appointed boards

    Boards that meet the requirements for reporting under Senate Order 15, which also encompasses a smaller subset of boards also reported under Gender Equality Reporting.

  • Government Finance Statistics (GFS)

    Refers to statistics that measure the financial activities of governments and reflects the impact of those activities on other sectors of the economy. 

    GFS function / sector reported: the GFS function/s under which the body's expenditure is classified.

    For a list of GFS functions, see Statement 6 in Budget Paper No.1 of the Budget documents.

    For more information on GFS, see the Australian Bureau of Statistics publication 5514.0 Australian System of Government Finance Statistics: Concepts, Sources and Methods.

    GFS Sector Classification: whether the body for GFS reporting purposes is part of the:

    • General Government Sector (GGS),
    • a Public Non-Financial Ccorporation (PNFC),
    • a Public Financial Corporation (PFC), or
    • unclassified.


  • Materiality

    Materiality is determined by aggregating total income, expenses, assets and liabilities of all bodies. Bodies whose total falls within the top 99 per cent of the total general government sector are classified as material bodies. All Departments of State are classified as material. Material bodies are identified based on their impact on the whole-of-government financial statements.


  • Other boards and structures

    Includes all other boards, subsidiaries, joint ventures and other structures not meeting the reporting requirements for Senate Order 15.


  • Portfolio

    A minister's area of responsibility as a member of Cabinet. Within each portfolio there are one or more departments plus a number of agencies.


  • Senate Order 15

    On 24 June 2008, the Senate agreed to a motion by Senator Minchin requiring all Australian Government departments and agencies to produce a list of all appointments made by the government (through Executive Council, Cabinet and ministers) to statutory authorities, executive agencies, advisory boards, government business enterprises and all other Commonwealth bodies, including the term of the appointment and remuneration for the position. A further amendment to the order agreed to by the Senate 12 May 2009 requires departments and agencies to include the place of permanent residence by state or territory of appointees.

    The order also requires departments and agencies to produce a list of all existing vacancies to be filled by government appointment to statutory authorities, executive agencies, advisory boards, government business enterprises and all other Commonwealth bodies.

    The lists are tabled three times a year, no later than 7 days before the commencement of:

    • Budget Estimates
    • Supplementary Budget Estimates
    • Additional Estimates

    The Australian Parliament House lists the procedural orders of continuing effect which includes Senate Order 15: Department and agency appointments and vacancies.