Only 8% of candidates in the federal election come from diverse backgrounds

by Josh Nicholas

16 May 2022

Less than 40% (458) of House candidates are women, with the majority of both diverse and female candidates running as challengers in safe or fairly safe seats.

The most commonly self-identified occupations of House candidates – aside from existing members of parliament – are managers, retirees and businesspeople. Some unique occupations listed by only a single candidate include a showman, firearms dealer, humanitarian and a carbon farmer.

Although the lists are largely crowdsourced via public statements and may not be comprehensive, as the Australian Electoral Commission does not release extensive data on candidates’ backgrounds, they nevertheless highlight a troubling lack of diversity in the electionwhich “is not representative of multicultural Australia”.

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