Final Eric Crampton

Dr Eric Crampton

Head of Research

Dr Eric Crampton is the Head of Research at The New Zealand Initiative and co-author of The Case for Economic Growth. Dr Crampton served as Lecturer and Senior Lecturer in Economics at the Department of Economics & Finance at the University of Canterbury from November 2003 until July 2014. He is also the creator and author of the well-known blog “Offsetting Behaviour”.

Phone: +64 4 499 0790


Recent Work

Sideshow Bob and the Transport Committee

I’m a fan of classic episodes of The Simpsons. In Cape Feare, Sideshow Bob sneaks a ride under the Simpsons’ car, with murderous intent. After an unpleasant ride, he steps out from under the car, and onto a rake. And onto another. Every time a rake hit him in the face, it got just a little bit funnier. Watching the Transport Select Committee’s handling of Uber is funny too, but not ha-ha funny. Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
24 March, 2017

In search of the perfect planning system

One decent policy rule is never to make the perfect the enemy of the good, but to always keep the perfect in mind anyway. But sometimes there really is the chance to aim for the perfect. The Productivity Commission’s Better Urban Planning report is due for release in two weeks. The Commission’s blue-skies remit was a thorough restructuring of the urban planning system. There is reasonable consensus now on the current system’s problems. While the RMA provides a flawed framework... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
17 March, 2017
Lego person immigration jobs

Safety first, sanity later – if at all

This week brought furore over the thirteen thousand (or so) youths neither in education, employment or training.Employers complained of difficulty finding suitable candidates who can pass a drug test. The Prime Minister echoed their concerns. Migrant workers, according to reports, were more likely to show up on time and pass a drug test.The opposition asked what the government is doing about youth drug problems, if those problems are indeed so prevalent, and why so few beneficiaries subject to drug testing... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
3 March, 2017
windy road

Breaking from the beaten path

There was a dirt road north of our old farm in Manitoba. Grass grew on the hump between the wheel tracks. Ruts the width of a truck’s axles would get worn into the road. That was all well enough if you were driving the truck, but not so great if you needed to take a car down the track. The axles didn’t fit the tired old ruts.This week’s debate around the Initiative’s report on building successful schools reminded me of... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
24 February, 2017

Time for another tax switch?

National’s 2010 budget provided substantial tax cuts. But it also implemented an important tax switch at the same time. The government increased the GST while simultaneously cutting income taxes and increasing benefits to compensate. It is perhaps time to consider doing it again.Oliver Hartwich’s column in this week’s NBR argued that growing government surpluses should be divided between tax cuts, debt repayment, and investment in infrastructure. So it is worth thinking through what tax changes would make the most sense in... Read more

Dr Eric Crampton
Insights Newsletter
10 February, 2017

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