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About ACYS

History of this clearinghouse

ACYS had its origins in 1981 at the Australian National University in Canberra, where it was called the National Clearinghouse on Transition from School. The clearinghouse published a newsletter and, later, a bulletin and abstracts which were distributed free of charge.

In 1984, the organisation changed its name to the National Clearinghouse for Youth Studies.

In 1985, after a national bidding process, the clearinghouse moved from the ANU to the University of Tasmania, where it is currently located, under the auspices of the School of Education in Hobart.

Following this move, the project began to publish a quarterly publication, The National Clearinghouse for Youth Studies Bulletin and Abstracts, distributed on a subscription basis.

In 1989 there was a change of staff, a re-design and re-launch of the journal as Youth Studies. A year later the title was amended to it current title, Youth Studies Australia.

In 1998 the project's name was changed to the Australian Clearinghouse for Youth Studies.

Youth Studies Australia is complemented by a range of other hard-copy publications, and the ACYS web site. In 2006, the first issue of Youth Studies Australia in online full text appeared on the ACYS website, as a free resource for subscribers to the print edition who were school or individual subscribers.

ACYS began its online services in the mid-1990s.

These include the monthly email newsletter, Youth Field Xpress, and extensive web resources and information on youth. A Youth Facts and Stats resource was established in 2002 as a separate website, with initial funding from the Telstra Foundation. In 2008/2009, the Facts and Stats resource was suspended due to funding constraints.


Until 1999, the project was funded annually by the then Commonwealth Government of Australia's education portfolio, managed through the Youth Bureau.

From 1999 to 2007, the Federal Government's families portfolio funded the project on a triennial basis, again through the Youth Bureau.

In 2007, following the election of a Labor government, the project was moved into the education portfolio once again, under the responsibility of the Minister for Youth and a newly established Office for Youth which incorporated some of the functions of the former Youth Bureau.

Throughout this time the clearinghouse has undertaken contract publishing activities in order to supplement the funding it received from the federal government in order to provide its clearinghouse services.


In the '90s, an important activity of ACYS was the organisation of symposia. These were held in Hobart (1993, 1995) and in Melbourne (1998).

The ACYS Symposium Series was a biennnial series of research and practice symposia which aimed to be interdisciplinary, research-based and youth focused.The conference proceedings are not available.

Conferences in the series:

  • Youth '93 -- The Re-generation
    Held in Hobart in 1993, this was the first of the ACYS Symposium Series 2001. The conference proceedings are not available.
  • Youth '95 -- International and cross-cultural issues: challenges and change
    This conference was held in Hobart, 7-10 November 1995. The conference proceedings are not available. ACYS launched the book, Ethnic minority youth, at that conference.
  • Youth '98 -- Public Spaces, Public Voices, a research and practice symposium
    This conference about young people and public space, activating young people's voices, and youth agency and action was held in Melbourne, 16-19 April 1998. The conference proceedings are not available. See also our topics section on public space.
The 2007 'Are we there yet' conference for the youth sector was held in Melbourne and was organised by the Youth Affairs Council of Victoria. ACYS was the publisher of the conference proceedings: contact YACVic for details.