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Shaping New Zealand’s policy debates

Published in Insights, The New Zealand Initiative’s newsletter, 18 March 2016

The late Ronald Reagan once said “There are no great limits to growth because there are no limits of human intelligence, imagination and wonder”.

At The New Zealand Initiative we share his optimism.

We believe that bold thinking, rigorous debates and good ideas can create a better future for this country. And we see it as our role to promote better informed conversations on the issues that matter to all New Zealanders.

You will find this in our latest 2015 Annual report released today.

Our contributions come in all shapes and sizes. They range from our policy reports to our weekly column in the National Business Review. They are the meetings we have with ministers, MPs, bureaucrats, mayors, councillors and stakeholders. They are our speaking engagements and our radio and TV appearances.

We are proudly evidence-based and non-partisan – and we are proud to have gained the respect of politicians across the political spectrum.

As Greens co-leader James Shaw put it: “I often disagree with The New Zealand Initiative’s proposals – but that’s the point. We need more challenging ideas, quality research and thought leadership in New Zealand, not less. The New Zealand Initiative makes a valuable contribution to robust debate in this country.”

Or as ACT leader David Seymour said about us: “The Initiative is a beacon for those of us who believe that public policy is not just some background noise but the ultimate output and whole point of politics. The Initiative team have managed to advance ideas that politicians couldn’t or wouldn’t come up with themselves, all the while keeping us pollies engaged and intrigued.”

In the lead-up to next year’s election, expect more visionary ideas from us.

That is what The New Zealand Initiative is all about. Because we believe that a better future is possible.

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