Skip to main content

You are here

News Archive

  • Road Crash Analysis using Folium in Python

    Academic Research Assistant and Developer at the University of South Australia, Niki Patel has created a visualisation in Python using open data from Data.SA using road crash and suburb geolocation data. You can see Niki's visualisation here

    If you are a South Australian University student and have used Data.SA to create an interesting visualisation and would like to showcase your creation then contact the Data SA Team at 


  • GDA 2020 - "Know your data, Know your datum"

    The Australian and New Zealand Spatial Information Council (ANZLIC) set 30 June 2020 as the date by which its member agencies in all Australian states and territories will be ready to deliver and receive foundation spatial data on the GDA2020 datum.

    The South Australian Government GDA2020 Implementation Working Group (SAGGIWG) are pleased to announce that its member agencies have met that commitment and are able to deliver and receive spatial data in GDA2020.  This is a key milestone in the delivery of the state government’s implementation of GDA2020 as the operational datum for South Australia’s spatial data.

    This doesn’t mean data is no longer available in GDA94, it means each agency is now able to provide data in GDA94 or GDA2020 at the request of their downstream user.  Similarly, agencies are still able to receive data in GDA94 and each agency has its own policies and guidelines with respect to the provision or consumption of its spatial data.  Please check with the specific agency you deal with to find out more.

    Over the next 12 months, SAGGIWG will continue to work towards making GDA2020 the native datum for all South Australian spatial data.

    Over the next 12 months, SAGGIWG will continue to work towards making GDA2020 the native datum for all South Australian spatial data.

    Several state government agencies have released their open spatial datasets in both GDA94 and GDA2020.  Data is available for download as a zip file containing _GDA94 and _GDA2020 datasets allowing users to choose the datum of the dataset they wish to use.

    “Know your data, know your datum”

    With some spatial data now available in two datums, it is imperative to “know your data, your datum” and note the metadata of imported datasets to ensure alignment with existing data.

    ICSM Metadata Working Group have produced an informative paper titled “Preparing metadata for the Australian Geospatial Reference System” to not only provide guidance for preparing metadata for GDA2020 but also for the Australian Terrestrial Reference Frame (ATRF) and the Australian Vertical Working Surface (AVWS).

    With few exceptions, SA Government spatial datasets have been re-projected from GDA94 to GDA2020 using the Conformal + Distortion NTv2 transformation grid developed by Geoscience Australia.  Please refer to the ICSM website to understand the differences between transformations.

    If it is unclear which transformation parameters have been used to transform the dataset please contact the respective agency’s “contact point”.

    Web Mapping

    There are known challenges with mixing GDA94 and GDA2020 data through the web mapping medium. The issue originates from early days of web mapping when WGS 84 and its common ‘Web Mercator’ projection were adopted globally as the default datum for web mapping

    In 1994, GDA94 and WGS 84 were considered equivalent, so null transformation parameters between GDA94 and WGS 84 were introduced.

    Since WGS 84 is a ‘dynamic’ (or ‘time-dependent’) datum in which coordinates of features slowly change as a result of ongoing tectonic motion, this equivalence with the ‘static’ GDA94 slowly degraded until it remained accurate only at the metre level. However, since WGS 84 was generally used for low accuracy positioning or web-mapping applications (metre level or greater) no processes were compromised.

    When GDA2020 was defined almost 25 years later, a similar process was employed to create another null transformation between GDA2020 and WGS 84, since WGS 84 was now equivalent to GDA2020.  As a consequence, the EPSG registry describes GDA94 ≈ WGS 84 ≈ GDA2020 for low accuracy applications. This equivalence doesn’t hold for higher accuracy applications where there will be a misalignment of approximately 1.6m.

    In the short-term, to overcome the misalignment issue, state government web mapping environments will supply data explicitly as WGS 84 equivalent to GDA94 as this approach is intended to support the significant amount of data currently available in that format.

    Need more information?

    For more information on GDA2020 including fact sheets and transformation tools visit the ICSM website.

    Please direct any queries regarding the South Australian Government’s implementation of GDA2020 to

  • Air Quality in South Australia

    The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has a number of air quality monitoring stations in metropolitan Adelaide, Whyalla, Port Augusta and Port Pirie.

    The data collected from these sites is published monthly by the EPA on Data SA.

    For daily air quality updates in South Australia, visit the EPA's website.

    With the bushfire season upon us, it is important to learn how to minimise the effects from bushfire smoke until air quality improves. Follow the advice from SA Health.


  • GovHack State Awards

    The GovHack State awards have now commenced. The awards recognise and celebrate the achievements of GovHack competitors across Australia and New Zealand. Visit the GovHack website for all the award news. 

  • State of the Data and Digital Nation Report

    A South Australian Government initiative to digitise paper forms and save an estimated 850,000 pieces of paper annually has been highlighted in the State of the data and digital nation report, released last week by the Australian Digital Council.

    The initiative, launched in 2016, sees expert staff partner with SA Government agencies to help them turn inefficient paper forms into seamless online forms, making it easier for the community and businesses to engage with government services.  

    The State of the data and digital nation report showcases the progress of a number of other key digital and data initiatives underway across the nation, at both Commonwealth and State and Territory government levels. It highlights potential areas for collaboration between jurisdictions to improve government services for Australians. 

    To read the State of the data and digital nation report, visit the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet website.


  • GDA2020 datasets available

    Over the last year, SA Government agencies have been transitioning their systems and processes to support the Geocentric Datum of Australia 2020 (GDA 2020) and the associated Map Grid, MGA 2020.
    From the 4 February 2019, agencies will commence releasing geospatial datasets in GDA2020 format.  The GDA format will be apparent in the file name. For example, zip files will contain files ending in _GDA2020 or _GDA94.
    GDA94 datasets will continue to be available until the year 2020.  
    Agencies that are working hard to transition to the new system are as follows:
    • Country Fire Service
    • Department for Environment and Water
    • Department for Energy and Mining
    • Department of Planning, Transport and Infrastructure
    • Department for Education
    • Environment Protection Authority
    • Department of Primary Industries and Regions
    Keep an eye out for GDA2020 datasets released by these agencies. 
  • South Australia preparing for GDA2020 implementation

    To bring Australia’s coordinates in line with those from global satellite positioning systems, Australia will soon be changing to a new official national datum called the Geocentric Datum of Australia 2020 or GDA2020.

    Preparations by the South Australian Government are in full swing, with work being done to transition systems and processes to support GDA and the associated Map Grid, MGA 2020.

    It is anticipated that South Australian Government geospatial datasets will be available in GDA2020 in the first quarter of 2019.

    Stay tuned for 2019 when a list of agencies delivering GDA2020 data becomes available.

    It is anticipated that GDA94 datasets will continue to be available for 12 months after the delivery of GDA2020.

    To learn more about GDA2020 visit the Intergovernmental Committee on Surveying and Mapping (ICSM) website.

  • Celebrating the best of GovHack SA

    On Wednesday 10 October 2018, the GovHack South Australia (SA) State Awards celebrated the best entries in this year’s open data hackathon.
    The event was opened by Gail Fairlamb, Director of the Office for Digital Government, who also announced the winners of the awards sponsored by the Department of the Premier and Cabinet (DPC). The awards encouraged the use of open data to find creative ways to improve the lives of South Australians.
    Congratulations to this year’s winners of the DPC GovHack awards:

    More Jobs – Empowering South Australia
    Xtra Jobs by XTRA

    XTRA used a variety of data sets to develop an app. Xtra Jobs contains tools for individuals to assess their skills relating to desired career paths and identify training needs. The results can be used by both job seekers and recruiters to help improve employment opportunities in SA.

    Lower Costs – Improving the Lives of South Australians
    This concept takes the form of an interactive, self-serve kiosk that is hosted in libraries. The kiosk acts as a promotional database of activities and services in the local area that anyone can access and make use of. The team was also aware that not everyone has access to internet at home, which can lead to feelings of isolation and mental health can suffer as a result. With that in mind, they feel the higher connectedness would benefit both businesses and citizens. 
    Better Services – Citizens at the Centre
    Through the creation of a game that helps users to remember their bushfire plan, Ready Aim Fire also taps into the social media world to keep family and friends up to date but also alerts them of bushfire events. It provides the user with useful tips throughout the game to help reduce the threat of bushfire damage to homes, while also pointing out last resort refuges in their area. 
    Honourable Mention
  • Hackathon sparks new ideas for community

    Mount Gambier Library was a flurry of activity from 7-9 September as it once again hosted one of South Australia’s GovHack competitions.

    GovHack, the annual open data hackathon, brings together creative minds at various locations around Australia. Competitors of all skill levels use open data to pitch innovative solutions to everyday problems faced by Australians, often in the form of a phone app. 

    This year, the Mount Gambier Library attracted 45 participants who formed 11 teams. The teams submitted 12 completed project videos, contributing to one third of South Australian GovHack entries. ​

    The entries included Connected, a kiosk app designed for members of the community to access within their local library. The library is designed to boost mental health and wellbeing by making them feel more connected to local services and encouraging greater participation in community activities. 

    ​When asked about GovHack, the youth node team said they "appreciate the time and commitment by volunteers, mentors, leaders and helpers" and that it is a "great opportunity to express ideas". The adult node team also recommended the competition for young competitors, saying that it is a "great experience to prepare for the future". 

    Ms Terasa Nearmy, Library Youth Services Coordinator, was delighted with the response to the competition.

    "Statistics from show that, when compared to population density, Mount Gambier boasted the greatest number of hackers - it's a great achievement."

    For more information, visit the GovHack website.