Final Rachel Webb

Dr Rachel Hodder

Research Fellow

Rachel joined The New Zealand Initiative as a Research Fellow in July 2016. She holds a PhD in economics from the University of Canterbury where she previously lectured courses in game theory, econometrics, and labour economics.

Rachel co-authored our immigration report, The New New Zealanders, and is available to comment on this research.

The New New Zealanders: Why migrants make good Kiwis

Phone: +64 4 494 9104

Email: rachel.hodder@nzinitiative.org.nz

Recent Work

Parliament

Mutton dressed as lamb

Politicians are often accused of trying to pull the wool over the public’s eyes. It isn’t often they try to pull the wool under the public’s feet.Never a party to follow the flock, this week New Zealand First announced an innovative policy that will truly put New Zealand first in the world – banning the use of synthetic carpets in government funded buildings in favour of New Zealand wool.Winston Peters announced during the regional campaign tour "New Zealand First will... Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
14 July, 2017
data electronics

Computerisation First

Important developments often get overlooked during busy news weeks. With the Lions tour, the America’s Cup victory, and a salacious scandal or two, it can be hard to keep up. With all the excitement going on it would appear the public have overlooked some exciting announcements from the New Zealand First conference last weekend. Like the Initiative, New Zealand First recognise that local governments often incur costs to provide services and infrastructure from which they receive too little benefit. Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
30 June, 2017
sports field

Kentucky Fried Tragedy

It may not have caught your attention but New Zealand is in the grips of a tragic health disaster.Is this a particularly deadly new strain of the flu? An Ebola outbreak? Flesh-eating bacteria?No, this is a legal business sponsoring a sporting event. KFC have agreed to sponsor the Rugby League World Cup. A deal which a public health expert has described as a “tragedy for public health”.You see, according to this expert, when something “inherently bad” is advertised alongside something... Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
2 June, 2017
Parliament

Beating a dead gift horse

You should never look a gift horse in the mouth. Nor should you publicly bag the gift horse and accuse it of causing misery across the country. Surely everyone would agree to that. If someone is giving you money, you don’t insult them, you get on your knees and lick their boots. It is therefore baffling that there has been such a hubbub when Associate Housing Minister Alfred Ngaro said something to that effect. Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights newsletter
19 May, 2017
algebra1

The number one step

Treating symptoms without diagnosing the disease can provide temporary relief but is not the best way to find the cure in the long run.So it is with medicine, as it is with policy. It is difficult to solve a problem with policy if you do not know where the root cause of the problem lies.New Zealand students are presenting with symptoms of ailing numeracy. At The Initiative, we want to diagnose the underlying cause so we can prescribe the best... Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
28 April, 2017
Lego person immigration jobs

Confronting populism with evidence

The New Zealand Initiative this week made a case for why, when assessing immigration, it is important to count the benefits and not just the costs. Not surprisingly it was greeted with an intemperate response from NZ First leader Winston Peters, who railed at our finding that migrants are not stealing jobs from Kiwis. Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
The National Business Review
3 February, 2017
Data

Facts of immigration matter

Six months ago, when we started scoping the Initiative’s immigration report, we had a very specific audience in mind: Winston Peters. Our aim was to assemble all the available research and have a fact-based conversation with New Zealand’s most prominent immigration sceptic.Judging by Mr Peters’ comments on Facebook, which were re-published in the Indian News Link community newspaper, we have failed. Not only does it look as if the leader of NZ First failed to crack the cover of the report, but... Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Jason Krupp
Insights Newsletter
3 February, 2017
Lego people immigration

An alternative to alternative facts

‘Alternative facts’ has been the phrase of the week. President Trump’s attempts to increase the crowd figures at his inauguration demonstrated a new low in post-truth politics.However, ‘alternative facts’ are nothing new in political debates. Prejudices, distortions and outright lies are not a Trump invention. We encounter them all the time when people are led by what they want to believe to be right (as opposed to what is actually the case).It is then the role of academic researchers, journalists... Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
27 January, 2017

Shaky silver linings

It was an odd sense of déjà vu this week as someone who lived in Christchurch until recently. The earthquake was hugely destructive and distressing for many. But while it would be easy to despair, there are more things than just a few rescued cows for which New Zealand can be grateful. Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
18 November, 2016
Parliament

NEET policies need tidying

The issue of what to do with the 74,000 young New Zealanders who are not in employment, education or training (NEETs) is a tricky one. Labour correctly pointed out in its conference how difficult and despairing it can be for young people in this situation and what a waste this represents to society. Read more

Dr Rachel Hodder
Insights Newsletter
11 November, 2016

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