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Generational perspective necessary to do policy well

By Kieran Madden


Our view of human nature makes a big difference on which policies we devise and support. “If men were angels,…

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“Stay woke”

By Alex Penk


In a recent video, Barack Obama warned voters about “fake news,” telling us “to be more vigilant with what we…

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Algorithms no substitute for people

By Danielle van Dalen


The cracks are starting to show on the fancy computer algorithms we rely so heavily upon these days. The recent…

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Three strikes, out

By Alex Penk


The “Three Strikes” legislation is going to be struck out. The new Government has promised to repeal the law in…

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Save Social Investment

By Kieran Madden


National’s Social Investment Approach must stay, but not as we know it. Imagine, for a moment, that policies are cars….

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The battle lines for our votes

By Kieran Madden


It’s the economy, stupid. This phrase, coined by one of Bill Clinton’s wily campaign strategists, has done a crude but…

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The trust trade-off

By Kieran Madden


The Government is going all in on its Social Investment strategy for fixing social ills, but the big data it…

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Valuing access to work

By Danielle van Dalen


Unemployment is costly. It costs the unemployed person and it costs society. For plenty of people with disabilities this cost…

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“Beautiful as heaven, lonely as hell”

“Beautiful as heaven, lonely as hell”

By Julian Wood


I have heard friends of mine visiting New Zealand describe it as “beautiful as heaven, and lonely as hell.” If…

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Seeing the person, not the problem

Seeing the person, not the problem

By Danielle van Dalen


Politics and policies can change lives. However, policy is just an idea until people do something to enact it. For…

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Social insecurity

Social insecurity

By Kieran Madden


Humans deeply yearn for security. Safety, in both its physical and economic forms, is solidly perched just above physical survival…

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Family at the heart of social policy

Family at the heart of social policy

By Kieran Madden


It takes a family to raise a child. While the short-hand term “child poverty” is much easier to express than…

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Doing good and making money

Doing good and making money

By Jeremy Vargo


Earlier this year I had the pleasure of meeting a fascinating New Zealander by the name of Travis O’Keefe. I…

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Blunt tools

Blunt tools


Social Justice Minister Paula Bennett announced a raft of proposed legislation this week aimed at protecting children from abuse. The…

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Poverty Paper

Looking Back to Look Forward: How welfare in New Zealand has evolved

By Jane Silloway Smith


This working paper was presented at the Reviewing Welfare and Social Sector Policy and Reform Conference in June 2010. The…

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Invalids and Sickness Benefits: The United Kingdom’s recent reforms

Invalids and Sickness Benefits: The United Kingdom’s recent reforms

By Maxim Institute


A Welfare Working Group was established to look into the welfare system in New Zealand. Welfare reform has been conducted in…

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A thousand points of light

A thousand points of light

By Kieran Madden


Government and community are often confused and conflated. When the callers to talkback radio say “we should do something” about…

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