Motu Research Doctoral Scholarship awarded to Livvy Mitchell

Jan 19, 2022

Our congratulations to Livvy Mitchell, who has won the 2021 Motu Doctoral Scholarship. The scholarship is awarded to Motu Research Analysts who leave Motu Research to do a highly rated PhD course.


The scholarship objectives are to recognise the recipient’s outstanding contribution while employed at Motu – and encourage the recipient to gain the qualifications needed to become an independent researcher. This is one way Motu helps build Aotearoa New Zealand’s research capacity.


At Motu, Livvy worked on and led a range of research projects across different topics.


  • She worked with Dr Lynn Riggs on two projects commissioned by the Climate Change Commission, using the IDI and LBD to model and characterise the distributional impacts of climate change mitigation policies. Lynn and Livvy also worked with the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment to explore differences in the characteristics of workers and firms across industries with varying emissions intensities.
  • Livvy then led a project with the HRMI team, commissioned by the New Zealand Human Rights Commission, where they developed a framework to empirically evaluate the New Zealand Government’s performance on the right to adequate housing and the right to health care and protection.
  • Finally, Livvy led an MSD-funded project, alongside Dr Izi Sin, exploring the prevalence of gendered parenting and the intergenerational transmission of gender stereotypes in Aotearoa.


In February 2022, Livvy starts her PhD in Economics at AUT. The working title of her thesis is “Essays within the economics of crime”, which will involve numerous econometric evaluations of criminal justice and crime-mitigation policies in Aotearoa. She hopes her research can be used to better inform policy makers about if their large financial investments in the justice system are achieving desirable outcomes.


We wish Livvy well with her studies and thank her for her huge contribution to Motu.