Hurahura Research

Our research role

The Public Service Commission and the New Zealand public service are continually working to improve how public services deliver for New Zealanders. As we work on improving public services now, we must also keep an eye to the future, so that New Zealanders have a public service that better meets their needs and remains relevant in a changing world.

Part of the Commission’s core function is to provide leadership and over-sight of the public service and ensure the purpose of the Public Service Act is carried out.  From time to time, Commission staff need to do a deeper dive to understand a problem. Sometimes this involves a literature review or empirical research and analysis. Other times it can involve engaging with public administration theory to develop new understandings, or reflective practice and insights.

This collection of papers have been commissioned, written or contributed to by Commission staff members in order for us to get a better understanding of various challenges facing the public service, so that we can continue to work on improving how public services deliver for New Zealanders. The Commission’s aim in sharing the papers here is to make these ideas and analyses available to a wider audience, and to inform and encourage public debate, with the ultimate aim of informing our work.

If you have any questions, would like reports in a different format or are interested in discussing this work, please email:

Disclaimer:  The views, opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in these papers are strictly those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of the Commission or the New Zealand Government.

Please note: Prior to August 2020, the Public Service Commission was known as the State Services Commission. Documents published prior to this date refer to the Commission by this earlier name.

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01 November 2011



High-autonomy and high-alignment: coordinating a more unified public service

Written for a wide audience, the book will appeal to anyone interested in how we might be better served by our government, as well as to public policy practitioners, researchers, and students taking undergraduate and pos…


Interagency collaboration to reduce crime in New Zealand

Interagency collaboration to reduce crime in New Zealand

Author: Rodney Scott
Format: Case study
Date Published: 1-Feb-2018


Trust and Resilience: How Public Service Principles Encouraged Compliance with COVID-19 Public Health Guidelines in New Zealand

In fall 2020, the IBM Center for The Business of Government initiated a Challenge Grant Competition soliciting essays from academics and practitioners describing how government can best transform the way it works, operat…