Institute for Governance and Policy Studies

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Senior Associate


Dr David Bromell has degrees in English and History (MA Hons, Canterbury) and systematic theology (BD Hons, Melbourne; PhD, Otago). He has been a Mercator Research Fellow at the NRW School of Governance, University of Duisburg-Essen, Germany (2016);  a Visiting Fellow at the Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Otago (2011), a Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Policy Studies, Victoria University of Wellington (2007), and a Visiting Scholar at the Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, Dallas, Texas, in 1988.

David has worked in the tertiary education and NGO sectors and as a public servant since 2003. After 10 years at the Ministry of Social Development, including a year as acting Chief Policy Advisor, he moved to Christchurch in July 2013 to work with Environment Canterbury as Principal Strategy Advisor – Policy.

He teaches GOVT 539, Politics, Philosophy and Public Policy, in the School of Government.


David's current research interests focus on population diversity, social cohesion and public policy, the craft (and ethics) of policy analysis, and what 'a fair go' means in public policy making.

His publications on public policy include:

2017 The Art and Craft of Policy Advising: A practical guide. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.

2016 'Why (not) political philosophy?' Policy Quarterly 12 (2), May 2016, pp 80–84.

2014 'A fair go in public policy', Policy Quarterly 10 (2), May 2014, pp 12-21

2012 'Creating public value in the policy advice role: A reflection from the front line' Policy Quarterly 8(4), Nov 2012, pp 16–22. 

2012 Doing the right thing: Ethical dilemmas in public policy. Working paper, Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Otago.

2012 Evidence, values and public policy. Occasional paper, Australia and New Zealand School of Government.

2011 A changing population, changing identities: The Crown-Maori relationship in 50 years' time? Paul Callister and David Bromell. Institute of Policy Studies Working Paper 11/09, June 2011.

2011 What is public theology? Occasional paper, Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Otago.

2010 ‘Income inequality and the economy of ideas’ Policy Quarterly 6(3), August 2010, pp 40-44. 

2009 'Diversity and democracy', Policy Quarterly 5(4), Nov 2009, pp 29-35.

2009 ‘Recognition, redistribution and democratic inclusion’, in E Rata and R Openshaw (eds), The Politics of Conformity, North Shore City: Pearson, pp 231-255.

2008 Ethnicity, Identity and Public Policy: Critical perspectives on multiculturalism, Wellington: Institute for Governance and Policy Studies, Victoria University of Wellington

2007 Social Inclusion and Participation: A guide for policy and planning, with Marion Hyland