Our charter

The IGPS Charter informs all of the Institute's activities, laying out our goals and explaining our methods.

Aim and mission

The aim of the Institute for Governance and Policy Studies is to deliver independent, high quality and high-impact research that informs the policy-making process and influences policy development and implementation across a number of significant areas. While such research will focus in particular on issues of direct relevance to New Zealand and its citizens, it will also (where appropriate) have an international and comparative dimension. Whatever the precise nature of the research, it will relate to one or more of the Research Objectives of the Institute and act as the critic and conscience of society.

Research objectives

  1. To enhance the quality of public body decision-making.
  2. To contribute to the improvement of public management and governance in New Zealand and Internationally.
  3. To carry out independent public policy research in order to achieve better social, environmental and economic outcomes for the benefit of all New Zealanders.
  4. To seek through the Institute’s various programmes and activities to help solve (or at least ameliorate) some of the big policy problems facing contemporary governments).
  5. To deliver independent, high quality and high-impact research that informs and influences the policy-making process.

Outcome objectives

  1. To influence policy development, management and implementation in order to achieve better outcomes for New Zealanders and New Zealand.
  2. To widely disseminate the findings from research projects to better inform elected representatives, officials, policy-makers and the general public.
  3. To engage with the community through regular news releases and media commentary, workshops and public seminars.
  4. To have Institute staff and associates contribute to public debate in areas where they have relevant expertise, including preparing submissions on government bills and discussion papers.
  5. To raise the profile and public standing of the University and of the School of Government.

Research areas

  • IGPS will conduct research projects on a range of specific policy issues which relate to one or more of the Research Objectives of the Institute, including Central Government, Local Government and the community and voluntary sectors
  • IGPS will examine arrangements across all levels of government and at the various stages of the policy process (e.g. agenda setting, problem definition, policy formulation, decision-making, implementation, evaluation and, where relevant, termination)
  • IGPS will advise on decision-making measures which can be used to ensure that all relevant facts are taken into account and that decisions are made in the best long term interests of all New Zealanders.
  • IGPS will work on constitutional issues and public management.

Priority will be given to research on issues where it appears that vested interests are trying to get or retain advantages for themselves and so there is a need for the wider interests of all New Zealanders to be taken into account.

Research may include, but not be limited to, topics involving social trends, social equity, education, child poverty, immigration, public health, conservation and the environment.

The extent of the research undertaken may be constrained by the evolving policy context (i.e. what is politically salient and important in terms of potential, social, environmental or economic impacts) and by the availability of funding and the capacity of the Institute’s staff to carry out the work.