Colin James

An experienced political journalist, Colin has a keen interest in policy innovations and in the deeper political and social trends that underlie them.

Since 2011 he has taken a particular interest in the evolving social investment approach, originally known as the forward liability investment approach, and in the development of well-being economics within the context of the Treasury's Living Standards Framework.

Contact details

Phone: +64 4 384 7030
Mobile: +64 021 438 434


Colin has published seven books, most recently Unquiet Time (Fraser Books, August 2017), has edited several others, written three working papers and contributed chapters to many books, and papers to many conferences.

He provides briefings on politics and policy to business, government agencies and other organisations, and has contributed to long-range strategic projections for a number of government agencies, including the Treasury, the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment, the Ministry of Transport, and Statistics New Zealand.

A life member of the New Zealand Parliamentary Press Gallery and the E Tu Union, Colin is also a fellow of the Institute of Public Administration and was a former managing director of the Hugo Group and chair of Motu Economic and Public Policy Research. He has an honorary doctorate from Victoria University of Wellington.