Institute for Governance and Policy Studies

Emerging Issues Programme (EIP)

In 2006 Chief Executives in the public sector agreed to pool funds to enable the IPS to conduct research on emerging longer-term issues of cross-cutting significance to the whole public sector. Since then more than a dozen projects have been funded under the EIP. These cover a wide range of policy issues:

The last three projects completed were:

1. Post-Treaty settlements issues
Potentially the signalled 2014 end of the historical Treaty settlements process ushers in a new era in Crown-M?ori relations. But what will these new relationships look like? To help explore these evolving relations, we have set up a joint venture between the Institute of Policy Studies and Te Kawa a M?ui (M?ori Studies) at Victoria University. We have commissioned a set of short papers representing a diversity of viewpoints around five questions. These papers were released on a new website (posttreatysettlments.org.nz) which went ‘live’ on the 14th of June, 2011. The questions were:

Question 1: How will the Treaty relationship be conceived of in 50 years’ time given changing demographics and the lasting effects of the current historical settlements?

Question 2: What will be the implications of New Zealand support for, and possible ratification of, the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples?

Question 3: Should there be separate M?ori representation (seats) in parliament and on local authorities alongside other consultative mechanisms?

Question 4: Are iwi in the post-settlement environment on an equal footing after their Treaty settlements, in terms of the types of redress that were on the table and the adherence to relativities at the time of their negotiations? Are settlements ‘fair and durable’?

Question 5: How will iwi/Crown co-management of resources play out? Are there potential conflicts of interest in iwi being managers, guardians and also developers? And how different is this to the Crown being in all three roles? 

To access the Post Treaty Settlements website click here

2. Ocean Governance: The New Zealand Dimension
New Zealand’s coastal marine environmental is of global significance. With its declaration of an Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in 1978, New Zealand's jurisdiction spans over 4.3 million km2 of ocean, and the country’s coastline is in excess of 15,000 km in length. New Zealand’s EEZ is the fourth largest in the world, with an area of about 17 times that of the land mass (or 5.7% of the world’s EEZ). Due to the transitional character of New Zealand’s continental shelf, the coastal marine ecosystems of the country are recognized as part of the world’s top 15 ‘hot spots’ for threatened biodiversity.

Overall, marine governance remains sector-based and fragmented among a range of policies, programmes, and agencies with marine responsibilities. There are 18 main statutes, 14 agencies and six government strategies for marine management and planning. For instance, the Resource Management Act (RMA) provides the framework for development of major national resource and environmental management polices. New Zealand also signed over 13 international conventions with marine implications, including the 1992 Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS Convention) which was ratified in July 1996.

This project was commissioned by the EIP Steering Group to address the opportunities to improve ocean governance. The major goals of this project are twofold: 1) to promote the scholarly analysis of management options for achieving responsible stewardship of the oceans offshore New Zealand, and 2) to present, on the basis of such analyses, a characterization of the policy tools, options and instruments that can contribute to the consideration by policy makers of alternative, improved ocean management frameworks.

There are two major outputs associated with this project. First, the project will lead to the production of a series of draft “white papers” that will be circulated to policymakers, scientists and stakeholders after the first year of the project. These white papers will be revised based on the comments from the reviewers and organized into a final report that will emphasize the further development of policy change in ocean governance. The final report will incorporate:

  1. information from interviews of a range of stakeholders and government agencies on the important issues and concerns facing future ocean governance;
  2. an assessment of policy tools and instruments that may be needed to address future marine ocean governance issues;
  3. a characterization of important cases of marine issues; and (4) a comparative case study of other national and international efforts in integrated ocean governance.

In addition, the project will encourage the exchange of information and ideas about future ocean governance in New Zealand. Over the course of the next two years, this project will support four public workshops tentatively entitled “Forum on Oceans, Coasts and Islands” to discuss major themes in ocean governance of the EEZ and continental shelf.

Project manager contact details – mike.mcginnis@vuw.ac.nz

3. Future State Part 2 - Directions for Reform of the New Zealand public management model
The Future State Part 2 project will investigate new ways the public sector will need to work to address emerging complex policy problems. Issues to be considered include how accountability and performance management systems need to be adjusted to better facilitate cooperative working relationships between public sector entities. A primary objective is to consider directions for reforming the public management system. For further information and a brief summary of the Future State Part 1 project go to Future State

For an overview of the public management research under EIP and Future State 2 in particular go to the overview paper.

Project manager contact details – Derek.Gill@vuw.ac.nz