How does Origins work?

You need four pieces of information arranged in separate fields in a csv or tab-delimited format

  • A unique identifier. This allows you to link back to your behavioural data allowing you to reveal even deeper insight
  • A personal name (first or given)
  • A family name (surname)
  • A geographical indicator of usual residence eg a postcode or Suburb/State. This is optional, but when available, it activates the Enhanced Neighbourhood Insight feature to confirm and improve accuracy

Origins separately evaluates the personal and family names.  These are matched to Origins databases of over 3 million unique, globally-sourced names.  The software then uses the geographical indicator to confirm or modify the code by referencing ABS census data.  Finally, the software allocates each record to one of 260 detailed Origins CEL codes reflecting their most likely cultural and ancestral origin of that name combination.

Reports are produced summarising the information into broad cultural groupings to give an overview of the cultural mix of your data set.

The Origins database has been developed from comprehensive data sources covering around 1.2 billion individuals from around the world.  This is augmented with data gathered from more than fifteen years of genealogical, academic and local history research into the meaning and origin of names, for major regions across the globe.  The resulting output file allocates over 99.5 percent of records to the category reflecting their most likely ancestral origin.  For more, see Coverage, Accuracy & Privacy.

Back to FAQ