Academic journal article New Zealand Sociology

Some Mid-Year Reports

Academic journal article New Zealand Sociology

Some Mid-Year Reports

Article excerpt

Several recently released government and government-related reports are of interest to the NZ social science community. Some of these arise through the more limited role which Statistics NZ now plays in relation to the release of census data. Whereas formerly a considerable amount of data and commentary was formally published, more recently StatsNZ confines itself to 'quick stats' headline commentaries while outputting the data for wider use and discussion.

There are exceptions of course. Rosemary Goodyear (2014) has produced an extensive study of housing in Christchurch including some comparisons with Auckland and New Zealand as a whole. Census data to answer questions such as the impact of the earthquakes on data-collection, changes in housing stock, ownership, population decline, and increased housing problems are deployed.

Our Futures: Te Pae Tawhiti (Royal Society of NZ, 2014) was written by an expert panel of the Royal Society of New Zealand, based on data from the 2013 census. This also draws on a wider pool of expert input to identify the trends that will shape the future of New Zealand. It is part of a broader programme in which RSNZ endeavours to put together summative treatments of "challenging issues". Our Futures identifies seven key themes in its analysis of New Zealand's changing population and explores future implications of these changes: diversity, population change, tangata whenua, migration, households and families, regional variation, and work. In fact, when the reader digs into the report population change deals especially with aging and household/families with inequality/poverty both of which are useful perspectives to include even if somewhat disguised by the theme title. The material is available on the RSNZ's Our Futures homepage together with a range of supporting material including an infographic, videos etc. Supplementary submissions from many of the range of experts are on the website. Videos of the report's launch including a welcome, overview of the paper and a panel discussion, may be viewed on the Our Futures launch webpage. The set of seven areas seems quite reasonable although it is possible others would add more themes or alter the priorities. …

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