About NCLS Research

NCLS Research is a joint venture involving millions of participants over 30 years in different countries.

Formed in 1991 as an ecumenical research project between denominations asking ‘who goes to church’, NCLS Research has grown into a research organisation of world-renown, connecting churches and their communities.


The mission of NCLS Research is to help identify signs of hope in churches and its leadership, providing a credible research base to build vitality and connect churches and communities. Our research areas include Australian spirituality, church health, effective and sustainable leadership, and the connections between church and community.

Our staff team is comprised of researchers and communicators who seek to provide a creative catalyst for mission in churches and communities.

NCLS Research is most known for the five-yearly National Church Life Survey in Australia. Our Church Life Surveys, resources and research publications are used in countries around the globe. In times of social change, NCLS Research continues to ask churches and communities to reflect on their spirituality and consider the churches’ place within it.


NCLS Research staff are supported by sponsoring agencies:

Uniting Mission and Education, and Uniting, (NSW & the ACT),
Baptistcare NSW/ACT.
However, the work is only possible due to the support of a range of partnerships, other sponsors and networks of local, regional and national church representatives.

NCLS Research acknowledges the contribution of our associate researchers, from various research and academic institutions around the world.

The National Church Life Survey

NCLS Research runs the 5 yearly ‘National Church Life Survey’, held alongside the national Census in Australia in 1991, 1996, 2001, 2006, 2011 and 2016. Involving hundreds of thousands of churchgoers and thousands of churches and leaders, across more than 20 denominations each cycle, the Australian NCLS is the largest longitudinal study of church life in the world.

30 year anniversary

2021 sees the NCLS celebrate 30 years of the survey and is a great testimony to the cooperation and vision of Australian church leaders over such a time period.

Contact NCLS Research

The NCLS Research office staff can be contacted with any inquiries about the 2021 NCLS.

Email: info@ncls.org.au

Web: www.ncls.org.au

ABN: 23 256 203 959