Web-based GIS for mapping voting patterns at the 2004 Australian federal election

This paper describes a Web-based geographical information system (GIS) for mapping voting patterns, at the 2004 Australian federal election, at the polling booth level. The locations of polling booths are geocoded and linked with national digital datasets, including the 2001 census. The Web-based GIS can generate maps displaying patterns of voting for political parties across polling booths with overlays of data showing the demographic and socio-economic characteristics of populations within the surrounding polling booth catchments. A classification functionality consisting of equal interval, quantile, median-based natural breaks and location quotient may be used in order to generate different map displays. The Web-based GIS has been developed as an information dissemination and analysis tool to not only benchmark voting outcomes but also to visualise relationships between voting patterns and local demographic and socio-economic data.