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Special reports


Reflecting the diversity of New Zealand's population, many New Zealanders have an affinity for other countries in the world

This survey was completed in August 2018 with a nationally-representative sample of n=1,250 New Zealanders, 18 years and over. It was previously undertaken in 2011 and 2014. A change to an online methodology has meant that comparisons across the three years are not possible.

However, based on the current survey, the key results are as follows:

  • New Zealand's population is becoming diverse, with one-in-five respondents (19%) stating they were born overseas.
  • Many New Zealanders born overseas are recent arrivals. Over one-half of those born overseas (51%) came to New Zealand in the last 20 years.
  • While the United Kingdom continues to account for the greatest percentage of people born overseas (45%), significant percentages are accounted for by Asia (collectively, 19%) and 'other' European countries (9%).
  • 'Less crime', 'less corruption', 'better natural environment', and 'better education services' are key motivators for coming to New Zealand, as well as 'personal reasons'.
  • Given the diversity of the population, one-in-two New Zealanders (51%) have an affinity 'mainly for New Zealand' or 'for New Zealand and at least one other country'. Forty-nine percent have an 'affinity for only New Zealand'.

View the report here

Perceptions of China Monitor: Survey 2018

Research New Zealand is pleased to have assisted the New Zealand-China Council with this important baseline survey.

The New Zealand-China Council was established in 2012 to build strength and resilience into New Zealand's relationship with China. Understanding public attitudes toward China and how they are changing over time is critical to achieving its goals. However, other than the work of The Asia New Zealand Foundation, the Council has not had a sufficient evidence base to answer the question, What do New Zealanders really think about China?

This survey, conducted online with a nationally-representative sample of New Zealanders 18 years and over, in February 2018, addresses this information gap. It is the first to measure New Zealanders' attitudes toward China specifically, from the country and the bilateral relationship in general, to trade, investment and culture. It will be used as a benchmark to identify trends that emerge over time.

View the report here

Three-quarters of New Zealanders have been the target of an online or telephone scam

This is the first report in a series of three reports based on a recent survey of New Zealanders which examined their ownership and use of electronic devices such as smartphone, tablets, and laptops. Conducted online, between February-May 2018, with a nationally-representative sample of New Zealanders, 18 years and over, the survey also investigated their use of and opinions about social media, including their concerns with privacy and safety.

The key results of this report on social media and cyber security are:

  1. Opinion is mixed about the pros and cons of social media – 79% of New Zealanders said they had visited a social media site in the last 7 days; however, 53% are concerned about privacy, and almost 10% disconnected in the last year for a ‘prolonged period of time’, while a little over 25% thought about doing this.

  2. Almost three-quarters of New Zealanders (72%) state they have been the target of some kind of scam, either online or by telephone.

  3. As a result, three-quarters believe cyber security is a ‘major issue’ (76%), with 45% worrying about what happens with their personal data.

For the full report, please click here.

Over one-half of adult New Zealanders believe New Zealand’s record on gender equality is ‘better’ than most other Western countries (55 percent)

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In a poll completed in June 2015, by telephone, with a representative sample of adult New Zealanders, 18 years and more, we found that most adult New Zealanders believe men and women are ‘treated equally’ in the health system (72 percent believe they are ‘treated equally’) and in the education system (68 percent), but the level of equality is perceived to be very different in other settings. For example, about one-half believe men and women are ‘treated equally’ in the courts and the justice system generally (59 percent), in social settings (57 percent) and in government policies and programmes (54 percent).

However, the most pronounced differences are in relation to the workplace and in business:

  • While 46 percent believe men and women are ‘treated equally’ in the workplace; 45 percent believe men are treated ‘more favourably’ compared to four percent who believe women are treated ‘more favourably’.

  • While 32 percent believe men and women are ‘treated equally’ in business; 62 percent believe men are treated ‘more favourably’ compared to two percent who believe women are treated ‘more favourably’.

Despite these and other results, over one-half of adult New Zealanders believe New Zealand’s record on gender equality is ‘better’ than most other Western countries (55 percent).

For the full report, please click here

New Zealanders' Use of Smartphones and other Mobile Communication Devices

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Research New Zealand has just released the 2015 report on its annual Survey of New Zealanders' Use of Smartphones and other Mobile Communication Devices. This survey was first conducted in 2013 and, therefore, the report notes various trends that have emerged in the last 3 years.

There are four key findings and trends:

  1. Almost three-quarters (72 percent) of all adult New Zealanders now own or have access to a laptop or notebook for their private use (up from 66 percent in 2013). Also making a significant impact on the device market are tablets and iPads (51 percent, up from 29 percent in 2013).

    However, at 70 percent penetration (up from 48 percent in 2013), smartphones are fast becoming the nation's most popular device. This is a 46 percent increase in three years.

  2. Reflecting the lifecycle of the market, approximately two-thirds of all adult New Zealanders now own or have access to three or more devices (64 percent).

  3. With this in mind, a clear preference is emerging in favour of smartphones, with 59 percent of those with a smartphone and at least one other device, preferring their smartphone. This appears to be at the expense of laptops and notebooks.

  4. In fact, with the exception of smartphones, the daily use of all other devices is trending downwards.

Like previous years' surveys, this year's survey was conducted by telephone, with a nationally-representative sample of just over 1,000 New Zealanders, 18 years of age and more.

You can access the report here. The report is necessarily high-level, but customised reports are available on request.

National Identity

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At the time of the 2013 Census of Population and Dwellings, 75 percent of people in the country reported that they were born in New Zealand, while 25 percent were born overseas. However, where you are born is not necessarily the country you identify with, and in September/October of this year we measured opinion about this through a nationally representative survey of New Zealanders, 18 years of age and over.

This survey found that one-in-two New Zealanders identified or had an affinity with New Zealand and only with New Zealand (48 percent). A similar proportion (49 percent) had an affinity with New Zealand and at least one other country.

This survey updates a similar survey we conducted in 2011.

New Zealanders' Opinions about Key National Issues

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In August 2011, a Research New Zealand survey examined New Zealanders' opinions about key national issues. This research was repeated in February 2014, March 2014, April 2014 and most recently, in September/October 2014 (with a nationally representative sample of n=500 New Zealanders, 18 years of age or older).

Six key issues were presented to survey respondents as proposed changes. While less than one-half of respondents supported any of those proposed changes, the lowest levels of support were recorded in relation to:

  • New Zealand becoming a republic.
  • Changing New Zealand's official national day from Waitangi Day to ANZAC Day.
  • New Zealand adopting a new national flag.
  • Compulsory teaching of the Māori language in all New Zealand schools.

New Zealanders' Use of Mobile Electronic Devices

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In January and February 2014, we repeated our Mobile Electronic Device Use Survey. This is a survey that looks at the ownership of or access to PCs, laptops/notebooks, tablets/iPads, Smartphones and other mobile phones for private use. It places a particular focus on identifying changes in use between devices.

A nationally representative sample of n=1,001 New Zealanders, 18 years of age or older, was interviewed by telephone for this survey.

When we compare the results with those of the same survey last year, there are three key trends:

  1. There is a growing trend towards people owning or having access to multiple mobile devices.
  2. More people are using Smartphones and tablets/iPads this year than they were last year.
  3. There is a growing trend towards people preferring Smartphones over other types of mobile devices.

Census 2013: A Special Report

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We have released a report highlighting the key population trends following last year's Census of Population and Dwellings conducted by Statistics New Zealand.

Please feel free to open the report, to download it and to send a copy of the link to colleagues, clients and friends who might find it useful.

The Small Business Sector, Myths and Realities

View Part 1 of the report.
View Part 2 of the report.

The 2009 budget reflected the cautionary approach that needs to be taken in these recessionary times. With the potential for 8-10 percent unemployment, the small business sector could be greatly affected, given its importance in terms of employment and key industries, such as tourism.

The links below are to two reports based on research conducted by Research New Zealand on the small business sector. The first report focuses on getting started, the expectations of small business owners, and what makes small businesses different from large businesses.

The second deals with the relationships that small business have with private and public sector organisations, and the challenges and difficulties that small businesses experience remaining in business.

Global Downturn Affecting New Zealand Households

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A Research New Zealand Poll, conducted for North & South, showed the extent to which the global downturn was affecting New Zealand households in 2008.

Some 28 percent of respondents reported that it was having a big impact, while 53 percent reported it had somewhat of an impact. Fourty one percent of those affected reported that the value of their savings had decreased and 18 percent reported that the value of their debts (excluding house loans) had increased. 58 percent of those affected reported that they were cutting back on essentials such as food, power and fuel. The findings were incorporated into an article in the December 2008 issue of North & South.

The results are based on interviews with a nationally representative sample of n=500 New Zealanders 15 years and older, and have been weighted by age, gender and region, to ensure the total sample is representative of the New Zealand adult population. Interviews were conducted by telephone between 14 and 22 October 2008. Results based on the total sample are subject to a maximum margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent (at the 95 percent confidence level).

Financial Crisis Bites Middle New Zealand

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Recently, the media have been full of stories about the global credit crunch, the collapse of a number of finance companies in New Zealand and the rising costs of fuel and other basics, such as food items.

Concerned about how this was affecting ordinary New Zealanders, Research New Zealand completed a nationwide survey in March 2008, to assess the impact this was having.

The results of this survey were used by Caroline Courtney, a staff writer at North & South, to write the lead story The Price of Milk - and Everything Else in the April 2008 issue.

Information and Communication Technology in New Zealand Schools

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Since 1993, Research New Zealand has undertaken major studies of the extent to which New Zealand schools have access to Information and Communication Technology, on behalf of the 2020 Trust.

Ministry Of Social Development “The Social Report”

View the summary report.
View the full report.

Each year, the Ministry of Social Development publishes "The Social Report", which provides information on the social and economic health and wellbeing of New Zealand society. It is a wide-ranging report and Research New Zealand has, therefore, written a handy summary of the key social and economic indicators.

The General Public's Views On "Sustainability"

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In July 2007, a Research New Zealand - Clemenger BBDO poll examined the New Zealand public's attitudes towards sustainability.

The aim of the research was to benchmark New Zealander's current awareness, knowledge and attitudes towards sustainability, to inform the debate on sustainability and related initiatives.

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