Insights newsletter

Everybody knows that inequality has been rising in New Zealand since the reforms of the 1980s. We know this because the media and politicians tell us so. The last few...
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National’s latest social housing announcements have left a lot of low-hanging fruit for critics. There is enough ambiguity for the Opposition to set the expectations of what good evidence-based reform...
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Philosopher George Santayana’s quote about those who ignore history are doomed to repeat it is somewhat of cliché, but only because it is damned applicable. But if there is one...
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Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si’ has been both praised and criticised for its focus on the environment. That is indeed what a large chunk of this circular letter sent to...
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Chris Berg last week made a compelling case against the tyranny of experts. In large part, I sympathise with him. Far too many bureaucrats and academics like to imagine that...
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The postman used to ring at least five days a week. As of the first of July however, New Zealand Post will restrict deliveries to every second day. But the...
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We are living through what has been described as a “crisis” of democracy. In Australia, poll after poll reveals deep dissatisfaction with the way democratic politics operate. Cynicism about politics...
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This week the Productivity Commission released its draft report on land supply in New Zealand’s biggest cities, showing how various regulatory and planning constraints have choked it to a trickle....
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As anyone with a marketing background will tell you, humans are simple creatures. We have an appetite for the new. Old ideas must be repackaged in innovative and shiny ways,...
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This week, the OECD released its economic survey of New Zealand. Its 149 pages provide a comprehensive overview of the New Zealand economy, its strengths and weaknesses. The tone of...
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The death of Lecretia Seales and Justice David Collins’ ruling that it is Parliament’s job to decide on the right to death has again breathed life into the controversial topic...
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From mammoth bone huts in 16,000 BC and 3rd century French chateaux, to modern 20th century pre-fab, the evolution of housing through the centuries makes for pretty fascinating stuff. Skip...
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Growing up in Canada, I often heard that profiting from illness was just wrong. Canada’s public health system generally banned private medicine. Whenever anybody pointed to systems like New Zealand’s,...
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Social bonds have caused quite a stir in the media this week. The model has attracted a deluge of negative feedback. Some of the criticism is warranted. Other concerns, however,...
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Yesterday, the Initiative launched Un(ac)countable: Why millions on maths returned little. Authored by Rose Patterson, the report shows how changing teaching methods in maths have failed to improve our primary...
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Here is a brain teaser: Suppose an aeroplane takes an hour to fly from A to B on a calm day. Now imagine that it is a windy so that...
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Superannuation was in the news again this week following the government's budget announcement.   Labour leader Andrew Little demanded tighter eligibility requirements of the universal pension scheme. Finance Minister Bill...
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New Zealand has long struggled with a geographic weakness, namely a position on the globe so remote that Tasmania features almost as prominently on a world map as the Land...
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Budget 2015 was delivered yesterday, and my colleagues below take a look at this mixed bag of good and questionable decisions. But what about the overall direction of the government?...
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Housing formed one of the main cornerstones of the government’s budget. The announcements were dominated by demand-side measures, the most prominent of which was to make gains from the sale...
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  The new merged organisation is the New Zealand Initiative, an independent public policy think tank supported by chief executives of major New Zealand businesses.  Our mission is to help build a better, stronger New Zealand. We are taking the initiative to promote a prosperous, free and fair society with a competitive, open and dynamic economy.     Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, cons ectetuer adipiscing elit, diam nonummy nibh lorem dolor magna amet.