List of all past events

23 March


COVID-19 Nation Dates book launch

The Institute hosted a book launch for COVID-19 Nation Dates on Thursday, 23 March. This was to commemorate three years from when Prime Minister Hon Jacinda Ardern declared a State of National Emergency for Aotearoa New Zealand at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

COVID-19 Nation Dates: A timeline of significant events in Aotearoa New Zealand’s COVID-19 pandemic is the newest book in the Nation Dates series. This book presents a timeline of significant events that have shaped the COVID-19 pandemic in Aotearoa New Zealand. It is available for purchase for $35.00 on our BigCartel store.

See more about COVID-19 Nation Dates at

22 February


Brief to the Incoming Government (BIG Ideas)

At the Brief to the Incoming Government (BIG Ideas) discussion and webinar, Professor Girol Karacaoglu and Wendy McGuinness discussed seven BIG ideas for politicians, political parties, policy analysts and others to discuss, consider and reflect on in advance of the upcoming election. This was an exercise based upon crowd-sourced ideas that have an overall aim of shaping Aotearoa New Zealand’s long-term future (for the better). Throughout the event, these ideas were collected, considered, challenged and debated between attendees.

See Discussion Paper 2023/01 – BIG Ideas: Brief to the Incoming Government (Short Read), Discussion Paper 2023/01 – BIG Ideas: Brief to the Incoming Government (Long Read) and the webinar video.


Professor Girol Karacaoglu has extensive experience in public policy. He was Head of School of Government at Victoria University of Wellington from 2016 to 2022 and before that, Chief Economist at the New Zealand Treasury from 2012 to 2016. His previous roles include Chief Executive of the Co-operative Bank of New Zealand, General Manager at Westpac NZ, Chief Economist at the National Bank of New Zealand, and lecturer in Economics at Victoria Univeristy of Wellington.

Wendy McGuinness is the founder and chief executive of the McGuinness Institute Te Hononga Waka. The Institute is a non-partisan think tank working towards a sustainable future for Aotearoa New Zealand using the tools of hindsight, insight and foresight.

9 June


2021 GDS Index launch webinar

At the 2021 GDS Index launch webinar, Wendy McGuinness discussed the Institute’s recent work ranking and analysing government department strategies (GDSs), and briefly explored some of the key components of the Institute’s recent publication, 2021 Government Department Strategies Index Handbook.


Wendy McGuinness is the founder and chief executive of the McGuinness Institute Te Hononga Waka. The Institute is a non-partisan think tank working towards a sustainable future for Aotearoa New Zealand using the tools of hindsight, insight and foresight.

Learn more about this event, and watch the webinar recording here.

1 September


Long-term Insights Briefings: A novel policy instrument to deal with foresight

At the Long-term Insights Briefings webinar, the panelists covered the need for future thinking in government, highlighted how corporations and countries apply foresight, and suggested a range of ways chief executives might prepare briefings. They concluded by discussing what a successful briefing might deliver. The discussion was moderated by Professor Girol Karacaoglu, Head of the School of Government and former Chief Economist for the New Zealand Treasury.


Roger Dennis has worked for more than two decades with organisations around the world to help leaders make sense of a fast-changing world. He is a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council in Washington and an Edmund Hillary Fellow.

Dr David Skilling is the founding director of Landfall Strategy Group, an economic and policy advisory firm based in the Netherlands and Singapore. David advises governments, companies and financial institutions in Asia, the Middle East and Europe on the impact of global macro, globalisation and geopolitics, from a small advanced economy perspective.

Wendy McGuinness is the founder and chief executive of the McGuinness Institute Te Hononga Waka. The Institute is a non-partisan think tank working towards a sustainable future for Aotearoa New Zealand using the tools of hindsight, insight and foresight.

Learn more about this event here.

Watch the webinar recording here.


18 August


Establishing Aotearoa New Zealand’s Reference Climate Scenarios

This discussion, held on 18 August 2021, was part of the first stage of ‘Establishing Aotearoa New Zealand’s reference climate scenarios’, a discussion that brought attendees online for two hours during day one of Alert Level 4 lockdown. This discussion will contribute to Report 18: Climate Change Strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand

The discussion included a presentation by Professor Nick Golledge (Antarctic Research Centre, Victoria University of Wellington) on the IPCC Sixth Assessment Report, as well as a presentation by Wendy McGuinness. 

View Nick’s presentation and Wendy’s slideshow here.


21 July


Futures Thinking Presentation

Review into the Future for Local Government
Te Arotake i te Anamata mō Ngā Kaunihera

On 21 July 2021 Wendy McGuinness presented Futures Thinking, as part of the Review into the Future for Local Government Te Arotake i te Anamata mō Ngā Kaunihera. The purpose of the presentation was to contribute to a review of the future of local government.

Learn more about this event here.

View the presentation slides here.


14 July


Political stability despite minority governments: the New Zealand experience

On 14 July 2021 Wendy McGuinness, Chief Executive of the McGuinness Institute, presented Political stability despite minority governments: the New Zealand experience. This presentation was part of the SDG Webinar Series, hosted by Jeffrey Sachs Center for Sustainable Development from Sunway University, Malaysia.

Learn more about this event here.


21 May


Emissions Reduction Plan Strategy Mapping Workshop

The Emissions Reduction Plan strategy mapping workshop connected a group of highly motivated and informed parties to explore the creation of an emissions eduction plan strategy map. The workshop helped the participants learn more about the strategy mapping tool, and tested whether a strategy mapping exercise (worksheet 1) followed by an assumption mapping exercise (worksheet 2) could contribute to improving the design and communication of a strategy.


  • Roana Bennett
  • Greg Briner
  • Lionel Carter
  • Matthew Everett
  • Malisha Frawley
  • David Gawith
  • David Hall
  • Ella Lawton
  • Tom Milton
  • Leah Murphy
  • James Palmer
  • Michelle Pawson
  • Donna Purdue
  • Lachlan Rule
  • Elliot Scholz
  • Ali Segura
  • John Stewart
  • Nigel Taptiklis
  • Alex White

Learn more about the Emissions Reduction Plan Strategy Mapping Workshop here.

    30 Mar


    Mission Aotearoa: Mapping our Future webinar

    McGuinness Institute, in collaboration with Callaghan Innovation, hosted Mission Aotearoa: Mapping our future, a discussion on how we might create a mission-orientated strategy. Mission Aotearoa marked the tenth anniversary of Sir Paul Callaghan’s keynote address at StrategyNZ: Mapping our future, where he challenged New Zealanders to think about the type of country we might like Aotearoa to become.

    International speakers included:

    Catherine Callaghan QC (UK), Barrister at Blackstone Chambers and daughter of the late Sir Paul Callaghan.⁠⁠
    Rowan Conway (UK), Head of Mission Oriented Innovation Network at University College London (UCL), led by Mariana Mazzucato⁠⁠.
    Dennis Bushnell (USA), Chief Scientist, NASA Langley Research Center⁠⁠.
    Aaron Maniam (Singapore), Deputy Secretary, Industry & Information, Ministry of Communications and Information (MCI).⁠⁠

    New Zealand speakers included:

    Sam Morgan (NZ), Entrepreneur and founder of TradeMe and Jasmine Social Investments⁠.
    Alexander Fala (NZ), CEO of Syft Technologies⁠.
    Sacha McMeeking (NZ), Head of Aotahi – School of Māori and Indigenous Studies, University of Canterbury.⁠
    Jamie Newth (NZ), Director and CEO of Soul Capital and Lecturer at University of Auckland⁠.
    Donna Purdue (NZ), Chief Economist at MBIE⁠.
    Vic Crone (NZ), CEO of Callaghan Innovation.

    Learn more about Mission Aotearoa: Mapping our future here.

    28 May


    A Near Horizon: Seizing the opportunities and
    managing the risks in the transition to net-zero:

    The importance of climate-related financial disclosures

    Ko nga pae tata, whakamaua kia tina
    For the near horizon and opportunities! Seize them!

    To manage Aotearoa New Zealand’s transition to a low-carbon future, every professional financial decision must take climate change into account. How do we manage this transition? How essential is disclosure in achieving this?McGuinness Institute, in collaboration with Simpson Grierson, and the Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB) hosted a virtual roundtable discussion to hear the perspectives of some of the world’s thought leaders on climate change and finance:

    Mark Carney, United Nations Special Envoy for Climate Action and Finance and former Governor of the Bank of England
    Adrian Orr, Governor of the Reserve Bank of New Zealand
    James Shaw, Minister for Climate Change, Minister for Statistics and Associate Minister for Finance

    Read the background note on the event here and watch the recorded webinar here.

    ‘A Near Horizon’ is a collaboration between:

    McGuinness Institute
    Simpson Grierson
    Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB)

    Supported by:

    Reserve Bank of New Zealand
    NZ Super Fund
    Pollination Group

    Thank you to Trevor Moeke (principal advisor at New Zealand Treasury and Māori leader) for providing his insights; and Pollination Group for the technical support.

    Learn more about A Near Horizon here.



    30 Oct


    Revisiting Tomorrow: Navigating with Foresight
    Lessons from the Commission for the Future
    and the New Zealand
    Planning Council

    How to begin the hugely complex task of thinking about the future?
    – Margaret Hunn, Commission for the Future, 1981

    In the mid-1970s international futurist Alvin Toffler visited New Zealand. During this visit he met with both Prime Minister Robert Muldoon and future Prime Minister Jim Bolger (who at the time was a National Party MP). Their meeting was a precursor to the passing of the 1977 New Zealand Planning Act, which established both the Commission for the Future (long-term thinking) and the New Zealand Planning Council (medium-term planning).

    While the Commission was later disbanded in 1982 under Muldoon, and the Council dissolved in 1991 under Bolger, recent initiatives such as the Infrastructure Commission and the proposed Climate Change Commission have the potential to embed foresight into public policy in new ways.

    Shifting away from linear short-term planning is becoming more important as the world faces increasing uncertainty, interconnectedness and exponential change. These challenges will require different ways of exploring and thinking about our future and may lead to the design of new instruments and institutions.

    Join us for a panel discussion between Rt Hon Jim Bolger and former members of the Commission for the Future and the New Zealand Planning Council, followed by reflections from several future thinkers on how we might embed foresight into public policy in 2020 and beyond. Speakers include:

    Rt Hon Jim BolgerFormer Prime Minister 1990–1997
    Dame Silvia Cartwright, Commissioner, Commission for the Future 1977-1981
    Dame Beverley Wakem, Commissioner, Commission for the Future 1977-1981
    Peter Rankin, Chief Executive, New Zealand Planning Council 1982–1990
    Tāmati KrugerChief Negotiator, Tuhoe 2013 Treaty Settlement
    Amy FletcherAssociate Professor of Political Science, University of Canterbury
    Wendy McGuinnessChief Executive, McGuinness Institute

    Wednesday 30 October 2019
    National Library of New Zealand, 70 Molesworth Street, Thorndon, Wellington (Aitken Street entrance)
    5.30 pm – 7.30 pm (arrive by 5.15 pm) followed by refreshments
    RSVP: By Monday, 28 October 2019 (seats are limited)

    If you would like to get in touch regarding this event, please email us at

    Click here for more information.

    16/17 Oct


    TCFD Workshops: Practical steps for implementation 
    Auckland and Wellington 

    Standard-setters, policy-makers, investors and citizens around the globe are assessing the ways in which they can meet the Paris Agreement goal of 1.5oC. The 2017 G20 Financial Stability Board’s Recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) has emerged as ‘the framework’ shaping climate-related financial disclosures. 

    • ‘A total of 785 organisations are now supporters of the TCFD, including the world’s largest banks, asset managers and pension funds, responsible for assets of [USD] $118 trillion’ (FSB, June 2019).
    • ‘The TCFD has also received support from governments— Belgium, Canada, France, Sweden, and the United Kingdom—as well as financial regulators around the world, including in Australia, Belgium, France, Hong Kong, Japan, the Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa, Sweden, and the United Kingdom’ (TCFD, June 2019).
    • The UK Government expects ‘all listed companies and large asset owners to disclose in line with TCFD recommendations by 2022’. They are ‘[e]stablishing a joint taskforce with UK regulators, chaired by Government, which will examine the most effective way to approach disclosure, including exploring the appropriateness of mandatory reporting’ (UK Green Finance Strategy, July 2019).
    • TCFD is discussed in the NZX ESG Guidance Note (NZX, January 2019).
    • The New Zealand Government endorses TCFD ‘as one avenue for the disclosure of climate change financial reporting’ and is currently considering ‘the most appropriate means for implementing requirements’ (MfE, August 2019).

    Speakers include:
    Hon James Shaw
    , Minister of Climate Change (Wgtn only)
    Michael Zimonyi, CDSB (Ak and Wgtn)
    Mark Baker-Jones,
    Special Counsel, Simpson Grierson, (Ak and Wgtn)
    Michele Embling,
    Chair, External Reporting Board (XRB) and Chair, PwC (Ak only)
    Kirk Hope,
    Chief Executive BusinessNZ (Ak only)
    Kimberley Crook,
    Chair, NZASB (XRB) (Wgtn only)
    Christina Hood, RBNZ (Wgtn only)
    Ann Smith, CEO, Enviro-Mark Solutions (Wgtn only)
    Professor Tim Naish, Professor of Earth Sciences at the Antarctic Research Institute of Victoria University (Ak and Wgtn)
    Ian Edwards, Climate Change Adaptation Consultant, Queensland (By Skype) (Ak and Wgtn)
    Dr David Rubens, CEO, Deltar Training Solutions Ltd and Executive Director of the Institute of Strategic Risk Management, London (By Skype) (Ak and Wgtn)

    Date: Wednesday, 16 October 2019
    Location: Simpson Grierson, Level 28, 88 Shortland Street, Auckland 1141
    8.30 am – 3.00 pm

    Thursday, 17 October 2019 
    Location: Simpson Grierson, Level 24, HSBC Tower, 195 Lambton Quay, Wellington 6011
    Time: 8.30 am – 3.00 pm

    Thank you to Simpson Grierson for hosting the workshops in their offices in Auckland and Wellington. Thank you also to the Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB) for enabling Michael to join us in New Zealand and share his expertise. If you would like to get in touch regarding this event, please email us at

    Click here for more information.

    Thurs 30 May 


    A point of Vanishing Stability

    The McGuinness Institute invites you and other interested parties to ‘A point of vanishing Stability’ on Thursday 30 May 2019. Everyone is welcome.

    This event brings a variety of speakers together to explore how New Zealand can respond to the challenges of climate change. The end goal of this event is to contribute to a national climate strategy that provides an urgent yet considered response to climate change. The speakers will explore ideas on what a successful strategy might look like through a wellbeing lens. The date was chosen to correspond with the release of New Zealand’s first Wellbeing Budget.

    RSVP by Monday 27 May to and please also share these event details with interested parties.

    Click here for more information.

    Thurs 2 May 


    Launch of GDS Index 2018

    The McGuinness Institute invites you and other interested parties to the launch of the 2018 Government Department Strategies Index and the GDS Handbook. Everyone is welcome.

    This lunchtime event is also to thank government department officials who have helped facilitate the research.

    RSVP by Tuesday April 30 to and please also share these event details with interested parties.

    Click here for more information.

    8 Aug


    Landscape of climate change research in New Zealand lunchtime discussion event  

    The Institute hosted an event bringing together a range of people working in the area of climate change research in order to assess current work programmes. This lunchtime discussion event covered the research intentions of key groups in the sector on climate change in the next two years in order to identify gaps, inform future priorities and maximise often limited research resources. The event informed our ongoing work on climate change, as well as providing the opportunity to share the findings of Working Paper 2018/03 – Analysis of Climate Change Reporting in the Public and Private Sectors.

    AUG 1


    Launch of Report 17 – Building a Reporting Framework Fit for Purpose 

    This report will bring together the findings from our two surveys with what we can learn from national and international research. We aim to highlight key findings and make suggestions on how New Zealand might better use external reporting to drive foresight and strategy so that the country is better prepared for the future. The report was launched at a public event at the McGuinness Institute.

    See more information here.

    JUNE 26


    Post-CEO research trip refreshments and discussion event 

    This year for her annual CEO research trip Wendy attended the OECD Forum 2018 in Paris from 29 to 30 May. This year’s OECD Forum focused on addressing three interconnected issues: International Co-operation, Inclusive Growth and Digitalisation. Wendy then travelled to London to complete two Executive Education Courses, ‘Global Macroeconomic Challenges’ and ‘Behavioural Economics and the Modern Economy’, at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She also attended a number of how to: Academy events during her time in London. The insights from her research trip will inform the Institute’s upcoming Project 2058 book 2058: Options for New Zealands Future and the remainder of the 2018 work programme. If you are interested in hearing what Wendy’s insights were from her trip, read our blog post ‘OECD Forum 2018: Distilling the message from the noise’.

    23 NOV


    WakaNZ public presentation 

    The thirty-six participants from throughout Aotearoa who have participated in the four day hui in collaboration with the New Zealand Treasury presented to the public. Together these young people shared their ideas and aspirations for what a preferred future might look like in the post-Treaty Settlement environment. This presentation was at the Te Marae Rongomarae, Level 4, Te Papa, Wellington and was a free public event.

    19-22 NOV


    WakaNZ workshop

    The Institute hosted a four-day workshop in collaboration with the New Zealand Treasury in Wellington on Sunday, 19 November 2017 to Wednesday, 22 November 2017. To find out more about the workshop and the workshop outputs, please visit the WakaNZ workshop page.

    3 NOV


    U3A Wellington presentation

    Wendy was invited to speak at the U3A event in Wellington on Friday, 3 November 2017 on Project TacklingPovertyNZ

    2 NOV


    Nation Dates (3rd edition) book launch

    The McGuinness Institute launched the 3rd edition of our pocket-sized New Zealand history book on Thursday, 2 November 2017. The book launch was held at Unity Books, 57 Willis St, Wellington.

    Nation Dates presents a timeline of significant events that have shaped New Zealand and our collective identity from 1769 to the present. See the Nation Dates website for more information.

    17 MAY


    CivicsNZ workshop to explore options for a civics strategy for New Zealand

    Institute patron Todd Krieble, and Danijela Tavich presented their think piece on how we might build on the Constitutional Advisory Panel recommendations which included the development of a national strategy for civics and citizenship education in schools. Please see the CivicsNZ website for more information. 

    THURS–SAT 11–13 MAY


    New Zealand Community Boards Conference

    Wendy spoke at the New Zealand Community Boards Conference on Friday, 12 May 2017. The theme of the 2017 conference was “Making 1 + 1 = 3” or, how can we as boards achieve more for our communities with the resources we are given. NZ Community Board gathered a range of exceptional speakers for the conference who were certain to inspire us and provide us, not only with confirmation that we are doing a top job in our communities, but more importantly, challenge us to do more in ways that we have not tried before. See the website for more information.

    WED 10 & 17 MAY


    The governance of Genetically Modified Organisms in New Zealand

    As part of a research-based learning project, a team at Victoria University hosted a collaborative event for students and guests to explore policy recommendations for the regulation of genetically modified trees. Wendy McGuinness spoke about the Institute’s work on genetic modification in Report 16 – An Overview of Genetic Modification in New Zealand 1973–2013: The first forty years and Think Piece 6 – While AgResearch Fiddled.

    14–16 NOV


    LeadershipNZ Alumni Retreat

    Wendy McGuinness spoke at the LeadershipNZ Alumni Retreat on Sunday, 13 November on mindful leadership. Learn more here.

    12–13 NOV


    SingularityU NZ Summit

    Wendy McGuinness attended this summit in Christchurch. This summit brought some of the world’s top speakers and technological experts together with some of New Zealand and Australia’s current and future leaders. The summit aimed to provide the ‘knowledge and insight we need to compete – and win – in an exponentially changing world’. Learn more here.

    3 NOV


    TacklingPovertyNZ Mayoral meeting

    The District Council Mayors involved in the TacklingPovertyNZ workshop tour met with Minister of Finance, Hon Bill English, and discussed the outputs of the workshops. 

    1 NOV


    Qiushi Journal Visit

    Staff from the Qiushi Journal in Beijing will visit the Institute to exchange views on policy and ways to cope with social and economic issues. 



    CPA Congress

    Wendy McGuinness along with Warren Allen (XRB) and Mark Hucklesby (Grant Thornton) spoke at the CPA Congress discussing the importance of integrated reporting. Learn more here.

    MON 10 OCT


    Parliamentary workshop on civics, citizenship and political literacy

    Wendy McGuinness was a panelist at the civics, citizenship and political literacy workshop at parliament. Wendy’s panel discussed opportunities for working together between schools, universities, social research and public agencies. Learn more here.

    WED 5 OCT


    The University of Auckland politics discussion hour

    Wendy McGuinness spoke at the University of Auckland politics discussion hour. The theme was the ethical dilemmas of being a policy adviser.

    16 SEPT


    TacklingPovertyNZ 2016 Tour – Kaikohe (Far North) one-day workshop

    Date: Friday, 16 September 2016
    Location: Kaikohe Memorial Hall, Memorial Avenue, Kaikohe.

    A one-day workshop held in Kaikohe, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    15 SEPT


    TacklingPovertyNZ 2016 Tour – Kaitaia (Far North) one-day workshop

    Date: Thursday, 15 September 2016
    Location: Te Ahu Centre, Corner Matthews Ave & South Road, Kaitaia.

    A one-day workshop held in Kaitaia, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    31 AUG


    TacklingPovertyNZ 2016 Tour – Gisborne one-day workshop

    Date: Wednesday, 31 August 2016
    Location: Waikanae Surf Lifesaving Club, Grey Street, Gisborne.

    A one-day workshop held in Gisborne, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    19 AUG


    TacklingPovertyNZ 2016 Tour – Rotorua one-day workshop

    Date: Friday, 19 August 2016
    Location: Sir Howard Morrison Performing Arts Centre, 1170 Fenton Street, Rotorua.

    A one-day workshop held in Rotorua, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    15 AUG


    TacklingPovertyNZ 2016 Tour – Manawatu one-day workshop

    Date: Monday, 15 August 2016
    Location: Manfield Suites, 59 South Street, Feilding.

    A one-day workshop held in Manawatu, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    4 AUG


    Mid-Winter Evening Event 2016 – The 9 to 5 life is over

    Date: Thursday, 4 August 2016
    Location: e-Spatial, Level 1, Petherick Tower, 38 Waring Taylor St, Wellington

    Wendy McGuinness talked about navigating the shift from a job-based to a talent-based world: Where are we now? Where have we been? Where are we headed? And how can we make the most of this shift – in our personal lives, in our work and in our communities?
    Learn more at the TalentNZ website.

    14 JULY


    StrategyNZ: Strengthening strategy stewardship one-day workshop

    Date: Thursday, 14 July 2016
    Location: PwC, Level 16, 113–119 The Terrace, Wellington

    The primary focus of the workshop was to explore how New Zealand might better prepare and publish government department strategy documents.
    Learn more at the StrategyNZ website.

    14 JULY


    Exploring the Antarctic Treaty in 2056 (panel discussion)

    Date: Thursday, 14 July 2016
    Location: McGuinness Institute

    Learn more at the AntarcticYouthNZ website.

    1 JULY


    UK ‘Leaves’ EU: Implications for Europe and lessons for New Zealand

    Date: Friday, 1 July 2016
    Location: McGuinness Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    Dr Bernard Cadogan gave a lunchtime talk at the McGuinness Institute on Friday, 1 July 2016. He discussed his thoughts on the United Kingdom’s decision to ‘leave’ the European Union. Dr Cadogan’s talk was followed by a Q&A session and refreshments.
    Learn more at the NationVoicesNZ website.

    27–29 APR


    ForesightNZ: Untangling New Zealand’s long-term future

    Date: 27-29 April 2016
    Location: The New Zealand Treasury, Wellington

    The primary focus of the workshop was to develop a way to deal with the increasing complexity and uncertainty in the world around us.
    Learn more at the ForesightNZ website.

    29 MAR


    TacklingPovertyNZ workshop – Queenstown workshop

    Date: Tuesday, 29 March 2016
    Location: Queenstown Memorial Centre, 1 Memorial St, Queenstown

    A one-day workshop held in Queenstown, which contributed to the national conversation on tackling poverty.
    Please see the TackingPovertyNZ website for more information.

    17 MAR


    Going Places book launch

    Date: Thursday, 17 March 2016
    Location: Willis Bond Boardroom, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    Please see our blog post for more information.

    11 MAR


    Project One Ocean: Sea Education Association: Public Discussion

    Date: Friday, 11 March 2016
    Location: McGuinness Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    Please see the Project One Ocean website for more information.

    9 DEC


    TacklingPovertyNZ workshop Finale presentation 

    Date: 9 December 2015
    Location: Banquet Hall, Parliament Buildings, Wellington

    36 young people presented their thinking from this three day workshop to MPs and other guests at the finale presentation on Wednesday, 9 December 2015 held at Parliament. For more information on the outputs of the workshop and this event, please see the TacklingPovertyNZ website.

    6–9 DEC


    TacklingPovertyNZ Workshop: Exploring ways to reduce poverty in New Zealand

    Date: 6–9 December 2015
    Location: Wellington

    This workshop brought together 36 young New Zealanders between the ages 18 and 25 to prepare a youth perspective on the issue of poverty in New Zealand and how we might, as a country, go about tackling it. Participants spent most of their 72 hours in Wellington working hard at Treasury, in order to present their findings to MPs and other guests at the finale at Parliament on Wednesday, 9 December 2015. Outputs from the workshop are a pre-workshop video, videos of speakers’ presentations, a workshop highlights video, a video of the finale presentation and a booklet the participants will produce to share their findings. A big thank you to the New Zealand Treasury for their support. Please see our TacklingPovertyNZ website for further details.

    19 NOV


    Civics and Media Project Workshop 3

    Date: 19 November 2015
    Location: Wellington

    Together with the Royal Society of New Zealand we will be running the third of three workshops that make up The Civics and Media Project. The two earlier workshops are in Wellington (2 September 2015) and in Auckland (27 October 2015). The purpose of the project is to inform and encourage public discourse and engagement regarding civics and media, with the ultimate aim of informing decisions by individuals, industry and institutions across society. Six agencies have joined together to examine whether citizens and communities have the news and information they need and want in a digital age and to determine what a well-informed, civically engaged New Zealand will look like in 2030. Workshop 3 on 19 November will be a full-day workshop focused on the question ‘How do we ensure a well-informed, civically engaged New Zealand in 2030?’. Learn more: The Civics and Media Project website.

    22 OCT


    Launch of the StrategyNZ Report

    Date: Thursday, 22 October 2015
    Location: McGuinness Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    Join us for the launch of Report 15: Improving Strategy Stewardship in the Public Service at the Institute. This report brings together the findings of the Institute’s previous work on government department strategies (GDSs) and the current state of strategic management in the public sector. It aims to set out the ways that strategy stewardship can be strengthened going forward. To see The Government Department Strategies Index 2015 and the previous working papers in this program, please see The Government Department Strategies Index 2015 website and the StrategyNZ project page. The final report will be available for purchase through our online store.

    15 OCT


    Project One Ocean – Round-table meeting to discuss feedback from the Draft Discussion Paper 2015/01

    Date: Thursday, 15 October 2015
    Location: McGuinness Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    In August 2015 the Institute released the Draft Discussion Paper 2015/01: Proposal for the Creation of an Oceans Institute. The paper shares ideas about (i) why such an institute is necessary, (ii) what success would look like, (iii) how the institute would come into being and operate and (iv) the risks that act as obstacles to its establishment. This discussion paper is a work in progress, and we invite feedback as we seek ways to give the paper a stronger impact. The paper is a work in progress and the Institute is currently inviting comments. Find out more about the discussion paper on our Project One Ocean page. This round-table meeting will discuss the feedback received on the Discussion paper.

    24–26 JULY


    ‘Building a Talent Based Economy in New Zealand’ session, World Future Society Conference, San Francisco

    Time: 10:15-11:15 am on 26 July
    Location: San Francisco

    The World Future Society’s (WFS) annual conference is an exciting and thought-provoking conference. This year’s conference is titled ‘Making the Future 2015: Envisioning and creating the conditions to drive revolutionary change’. Hannah Steiner and Alison Nevill will be joining Wendy this year to present a panel session on ‘Building a Talent Based Economy in New Zealand’. We will discuss what we have learned thus far regarding the creation of talent-based economies. We are particularly keen to open the discussion up to the attendees and discover their thoughts on this matter.

    Attending the WFS conference is an opportunity to learn about emerging trends and wild cards. It is also a great place to share ideas, test assumptions and learn from international research. Most importantly it is where we hone our skills on foresight and bring these back to New Zealand. The Institute is the World Future Society’s chapter for New Zealand, and we have spoken at three of the Society’s previous conferences on our overarching project: Project 2058. Learn more: WFS 2015 conference website.

    14–16 MAY


    TalentNZ session, New Zealand Community Boards Conference

    Learn more: See the Community Board conference website.

    The theme of the Conference is ‘Influencing Change’, and will bring together local community board members from throughout the country. The Institute will be undertaking a session that will briefly discuss the role of strategy and why a focus on creating a place where talent wants to live would deliver optimal outcomes for New Zealand. The conference is being held in the Bay of Islands from 14 to 16 May 2015. For more details on the conference and to see when our session will be running see the programme posted on the conference website.

    12 MAY


    One Ocean Report Auckland launch and discussion

    Date: Tuesday, 12 May 2015
    Location: Willis Bond & Co Office, Level 4, 12 Viaduct Harbour Avenue, Auckland

    This event will launch the Institute’s recent report, Report 10: One Ocean: Principles for the stewardship of a healthy and productive ocean in Auckland. This report explores the seascape of New Zealand – the past, present and future. It identifies the need for change in the way New Zealand governs its ocean space and the upcoming opportunities and challenges for doing so. The report was officially launched in Wellington on Thursday, 26 March 2015 where the authors James Tremlett, Lionel Carter and Wendy McGuinness presented the report, which was followed by a discussion session. Learn more about this launch on our blog.

    The final report can be purchased through our online store and is available for free download as a PDF from our website.

    8 MAY


    Nation Voices: What makes a good political speech in New Zealand? 

    Date: Friday, 8 May 2015
    Location: McGuinness Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington

    Looking back to explore the key components of some of New Zealand’s great political speeches. If you are interested in understanding what makes a good political speech in New Zealand, join us for an hour with Dr Bernard Cadogan. Bernard will share his insights into the key components that make a speech resonate with New Zealanders. Speeches discussed will include those by Sir George Grey, Sir Apirana Ngata, Rt Hon. Simon Upton, Rt Hon. Helen Clark and Dr Don Brash.

    If you would like to read these in advance, please see

    More about Dr Bernard Cadogan
    Born Blenheim Marlborough 1961 | Resides Oxford UK, married with three children | Educated Otago, Cambridge and Oxford Universities | History, constitutional thought and political philosophy | Previous Political Advisor and Consultant to Hon. Bill English, Rt Hon. Dame Jennifer Shipley, Rt Hon. Simon Upton, Hon. Trevor Mallard | Advisor and Envoy to King Tuheitia Paki | Consultant The Treasury 2011; Māori International | Author “A Terrible and Fatal Man”: Sir George Grey and the British Southern Hemisphere.

    26 MAR


    Launch of ocean policy report.

    The launch of Report 10: One Ocean: Principles for the stewardship of a healthy and productive ocean was held at the Institute on Thursday, 26 March 2015. This report explores the seascape of New Zealand – the past, present and future. It identifies the need for change in the way New Zealand governs its ocean space and the upcoming opportunities and challenges for doing so. This follows the recent publication of Working Paper 2015/01: Ocean Management in New Zealand: Findings from a structured discussionThis document reports the priorities and areas of concern of those that attended our One Ocean discussion evening in May 2014. The launch consisted of presentations by author James Tremlett, Lionel Carter and Wendy McGuinness followed by a discussion session. This discussion proved to be lively broad discussion amongst the diverse stakeholder who attended. As a result of this discussion we want to provide a bit more clarity on a few points to ensure the report reflects this discussion. The final report will be published online at 5pm, Friday 27 March (see here), with bound printed copies becoming available early next month (and available for purchase now) through our online store.

    25 FEB


    What makes a government department strategy good?

    Over lunch we shared and ranked the preliminary results of how each of the 136 GDSs in operation align with our benchmark characteristics of what makes a good strategy. Learn more about this event or StrategyNZ  visit the project page here. To learn more about this publication

    16–19 NOV


    LocalNZ: Connecting youth committed to local government

    Date: Sunday, 16 November 2014 to Wednesday, 19 November 2014
    Location: Wanganui and Wellington

    The McGuinness Institute, with the assistance of a number of other parties (details are yet to be confirmed), brought together members from youth councils, and other youth interested in local government, from throughout New Zealand for a four day workshop in Wanganui and Wellington from Sunday, 16 November until the evening of Wednesday, 19 November 2014.

    This workshop connected 35 New Zealanders between the ages of 18 and 25, providing a space for them to work together to identify existing and emerging opportunities and challenges. This initiative formed part of the TalentNZ project; creating an informed, focussed and networked group of young New Zealanders able to engage effectively with government and the communities in which they live.

    For further information please see the LocalNZ website or  email us at

    4 SEPT


    One Ocean: Roundtable

    Date: Thursday, 4 September.
    Location: McGuinness Institute Office, 5 Cable St, Wellington

    As part of the ongoing One Ocean project the Institute is hosted an informal roundtable event focused on seabed mining on Thursday 4 September. The roundtable featured a short talk followed by questions with one of the Institute’s international collaborators, Katherine Sammler of the University of Arizona. Katherine is currently undertaking her doctoral studies into the governance of seabed mining in the South Pacific, and is coming to the end of several months of research in New Zealand and Fiji.

    30 JULY


    Shaping our science System – A SCANZ panel event

    Date: Wednesday 30 July at 5.30pm
    Location: Royal Society of New Zealand, 11 Turnbull St, Thorndon, Wellington.

    “Does investment in science influence society? Can we really expect it to meet New Zealand’s economic, social, environmental and cultural needs? Is it the level of investment or the areas in which the investment is made?”

    These are the questions which open the Science Communicators Association of New Zealand (SCANZ) event ‘Shaping our science system’ panel discussion, to be hosted at the Royal Society of New Zealand on Wednesday 30 July at 5.30pm. The panel includes our Chief Executive Wendy McGuinness as well as Professor Adam Jaffe, Director of Motu Economic and Public Policy Research and Dr Ian Ferguson, Departmental Science Advisor at the Ministry for Primary Industries.

    The event proceeds the closure of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE) draft National Statement of Science Investment on the 22 August next month. MBIE describes the statement as “…the goal of the Government’s science investment to support a system that meets New Zealand’s economic, social, environmental and cultural needs.” Which will influence New Zealand’s science funding strategy for years to come. Implications of how long-term investment for science is structured over the next decade will have far reaching effects that could influence a wide range of New Zealand society and people.

    The draft National Statement referred to above has opened a nationwide conversation about the future of science, and the SCANZ panel event intends to join this conversation by leading a discussion with open contributions from the public.

    Host: Science Communicators Association of New Zealand (SCANZ)

    11 JUNE


    TalentNZ: Launch of the Menu of Initiatives: Creating an environment where talent flourishes

    Date: Wednesday, 11 June 2014
    Location: NZX, NZX Centre, 11 Cable Street, Wellington

    Over 100 people joined Sam Morgan and contributors of the 2013 TalentNZ Journal at the launch of our latest publication – the TalentNZ Menu of Initiatives. The Menu illustrates New Zealand’s talent ecosystem and showcases a broad range of possible initiatives that communities might implement today to create Sir Paul Callaghan’s vision for a flourishing talent-based economy tomorrow.

    For further information please see our TalentNZ project page and the TalentNZ Menu of Initiatives website. To keep up to date with our TalentNZ project please connect withTalentNZ to receive our regular newsletter.

    27 MAY


    Discussion: What research would best contribute to the dialogue on Ocean Management in the long term?

    Date: Tuesday, 27 May 2014
    Location: McGuinness Institute

    On Tuesday 27 May the McGuinness Institute is hosting a public event at the Institute offices on ocean management. Join us for a structured discussion with:

    • James Palmer – Deputy Secretary, Sector Strategy at the Ministry for the Environment;
    • Bronwen Golder – Director of Global Ocean Legacy Pew Charitable Trusts, and
    • Ann McCrone – Marine Advocate World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

    Join us at Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellington. This event is part of the Project ‘One Ocean’ which was established in 2012.

    12–31 MAR


    TalentNZ: Creating a place where talent wants to live Tour

    Date: 12 March 2014 to 31 March 2014
    Location: Throughout New Zealand

    In March 2014 we travelled New Zealand with some of the TalentNZ interviewees, discussing ideas on how we might move towards a talent-based economy. Our aim was to contribute to a conversation about how New Zealand might growattractretain and connect talent – four themes that are apparent throughout the 2013 TalentNZ Journal. The primary aim of the tour was to facilitate informal meetings between city councils and some of the 30 interviewees with a view to discuss how their city might growattractretain and connect talent.

    In addition, we ran public events that enabled a wider discussion on talent. Working on the unique needs and characteristics of each community, we hoped that this wider discussion might act as an impetus for the sharing of ideas and people that can take those ideas and make them happen – delivering a talent-based economy.

    Please see the TalentNZ project page and the TalentNZ website for more information on the Tour. Connect with TalentNZ to receive the regular TalentNZ newsletter that outlines recent developments, discusses recent research and resources and keeps you informed about upcoming TalentNZ events.

    3–5 DEC


    LivingStandardsNZ workshop

    Starts: Tuesday, 3 December 2013 to Thursday, 5 December 2013
    Location: Treasury

    LivingStandardsNZ was a three-day workshop that ran from 3-5 December 2013. 28 young people attended the Government Economics Network (GEN) conference followed by a two day workshop where they explored ‘policy knots’, using the Living Standards Framework to resolve complex and long-term issues. This workshop was run in collaboration with the New Zealand Treasury and the McGuinness Institute. To learn more about this workshop visit theLivingStandardsNZ website.

    5 NOV


    An Evening With Reform: Strengthening our long-term fiscal position – comparing New Zealand and the United Kingdom

    Starts: Tuesday, 5 November 2013
    Location: McGuinness Institute

    Tara Macpherson and Kimberley Trewhitt, researchers from Reform, a UK based think tank, visited the Institute on the 5 November. Reform’s mission is for delivering better strategies to deliver public services and economic prosperity. Tara and Kimberley spoke to guests during an informal pizza evening and presented a comparative perspective on public policy in New Zealand and the UK. Specifically they focused on strengthening our long-term fiscal position.

    4 JULY


    EmpowerNZ: Submission to the Constitutional Advisory Panel Workshop

    Date: Thursday, 4 July 2013 to Saturday, 6 July 2013
    Location: The McGuinness Institute

    The participants from LongTermNZ present their 2012 Youth Statement to staff at the Treasury.

    3 APR


    LongTermNZ presentation

    Date: Tuesday, 3 April 2013
    Location: Treasury

    The participants from LongTermNZ present their 2012 Youth Statement to staff at the Treasury.

    25–27 FEB


    4th Freshwater Management Forum and NZ Marine Environments Conference

    Starts: Monday, 25 February, 2013 to Wednesday, 27 February, 2013
    Location: Rydges Hotel, Wellington

    The two day forum will be followed by a conference chaired by Wendy McGuinness, Chief Executive of the McGuinness Institute. The conference will provide a space to debate the critical future of New Zealand’s freshwater and marine environments. For more information see the conference programme here.

    12–14 FEB


    Energy at the Crossroads Conference

    Date: Tuesday, 12 February, 2013 to Thursday, 14 February, 2013
    Location: Wellington

    The National Energy Research Institute (NERI) and Victoria University are collaborating to present their 2013 Conference entitled: Energy at the Crossroads – energy innovation for a sustainable society. Programme details and call-for-abstracts will be available from July 2012.

    6–13 DEC


    LongTermNZ Workshop

    Starts: Sunday, 9 December, 2012 to Thursday, 13 December, 2012
    Location: Rutherford House, the Treasury, the McGuinness Institute, Te Wharewake o Poneke

    The LongTermNZ workshop will bring together 20 young people to draft a Youth Statement on New Zealand’s Long-term Fiscal Position. It will follow the two-day conference, Affording our Future, on Monday 10 and Tuesday 11 December, which is being hosted by the Treasury and Victoria University of Wellington. Please join us for the final presentation on Thursday 13 December 2012 at 12noon.

    13 DEC


    Christmas Drinks

    Date: Thursday, 13 December, 2012
    Location: Te Wharewaka o Poneke

    Come join the Institute celebrate the festive season with a Christmas drink at Te Wharewaka o Poneke. Guest Speaker – Dr John Volpe, research director at the Seafood Ecology Research Group (SERG) in Canada. John is a leading expert in benchmarking sustainable aquaculture and will discuss opportunities and limitations in a protein constrained world.

    28 AUG


    EmpowerNZ Workshop: Drafting a Constitution for the 21st Century

    Starts: Tuesday, 28 August, 2012 to Wednesday, 29 August, 2012
    Location: Beehive Reception Hall, Parliament

    The McGuinness Institute is organising a two day event in late August, aimed specifically at law and history students and graduates, and  youth with expertise in social networking to explore what a workable constitution of the 21st century could look like. The purpose is to facilitate a prescription-free exploration, creating an opportunity to treat the constitution as a blank canvas. The event is being hosted at Parliament by MP Paul Goldsmith and key note speakers include Dame Claudia Orange and Hon. Justice Joseph Williams. Learn more about this event here

    6 SEPT


    Nation Dates Launch

    Date: Tuesday, 6 September 2011, 6.00pm
    Location: Unity Books, 57 Willis Street, Wellington

    The launch of our first book, Nation Dates: Significant events that have shaped the nation of New Zealand. Nation Dates is a record of the past and provides invaluable context for the future at a time when our society is facing major questions about the way forward.

    28–31 MAR


    Nation Dates Launch

    Date: Tuesday, 6 September 2011, 6.00pm
    Location: Unity Books, 57 Willis Street, Wellington

    The launch of our first book, Nation Dates: Significant events that have shaped the nation of New Zealand. Nation Dates is a record of the past and provides invaluable context for the future at a time when our society is facing major questions about the way forward.

    22 DEC


    One Integrated Report Christmas Lunch

    Date: Wednesday, 22 December 2010
    Location: Sustainable Future Institute, Level 2, 5 Cable Street, Wellinton

    We are privileged to have Dr Ian Ball (CEO of IFAC) and Mark Hucklesby (National Technical Director, Grant Thornton) to speak at the lunch and share their thoughts on integrated reporting.