New Zealand’s government department strategies under the microscope
The GDS Index aims to illustrate how New Zealand might strengthen government department strategies (GDSs) to be more effective, responsive, measurable, comparable and durable through public consultation, engagement and ownership. If government departments make the content of GDSs more useful, these strategies’ users will be better able to assess their quality and, where appropriate, to work with government to deliver better outcomes more cost-effectively.
Government Department Strategies Index Handbook – He Puna Rautaki ranks each of the GDSs in terms of essential information. The GDS Index Handbook does not rate the strategy as such; it rates the strategy document’s provision of essential information and clarity of communication, so readers can then assess the strategic approach for themselves. Each GDS is reviewed against the Scorecard to determine how well it articulates each of six elements. The Institute regularly updates the GDS Index Handbook so that information can be measured, analysed and tracked over time.
Below is a list of the publications that comprise this body of work. All of the papers listed can be found on the Working papers page. Government Department Strategies Index Handbook – He Puna Rautaki can be found on the Books, journals, and other publications page, and is available for purchase at our online store.
If you have any suggestions of points of clarification, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your interest,
Order the 2021 Government Department Strategies Index Handbook – He Puna Rautaki below ($44.50 inc. GST and postage in NZ).
GDS Index tables
2021 GDS Index launch webinar
Definition of a Government Department Strategy
The Scorecard is used to assess the content of a GDS document and whether this content is sufficient for a reader to assess the quality of the strategy. It is not used to assess the quality of the strategy.
2021 GDS publications
The Methodology explains why the Institute produces and publishes a GDS Index and how, in detail, the 2021 GDS Index was created.
Download (PDF, 12 MB)
The Scoring paper provides the detailed scoring and ranking for each GDS within the 2021 GDS Index.
Download (PDF, 7 MB)
The Analysis paper outlines the main observations from the Institute’s most recent analysis of GDSs in the 2021 GDS Index.
Download (PDF, 15 MB)
The purpose of the Strategy Maps paper is to catalogue and collate all strategy maps that the Institute has identified within GDS documents during research for the 2021 GDS Index.
Download (PDF, 15 MB)
Analysis of Climate Change
The Climate Change Analysis paper outlines the explicit and implicit mentions of climate change within GDS documents from the 2021 GDS Index.
Download (PDF, 16 MB)
Letters to MPs and Chief Executives of government departments
Previous GDS Indexes
2018 GDS Index
On 2 May 2019 the Institute published the 2018 GDS Index. For the first time the Institute also published the Government Department Strategies Handbook – He Puna Rautaki (see below). At the 2019 launch Wendy McGuinness discussed why government department strategies are important corporate documents, the process the Institute took when conducting the research, and the obstacles and challenges experienced. This work is intended to contribute to a broader discussion about how to build strategic capability in the public service. See Wendy’s presentation slide show from the launch.
These 148 GDSs in operation as at 31 December 2018 have been rated against the Scorecard. The highest-scoring GDS on the 2018 GDS Index was A Biosecurity Science Strategy for New Zealand (October 2007), published by the Ministry for Primary Industries.
The publications for the 2014 GDS Index, 2015 GDS Index and 2018 GDS Index can be found below.
2018 GDS Index
Government Department Strategies Handbook (May 2019)
2015 GDS Index
Working paper 2015/11: Observations from the GDS Index 2015 (October 2015)