Our Research

Motu Economic and Public Policy Research is Aotearoa New Zealand’s leading non-profit economic and public policy research institute. We are a fully independent charitable trust. Our reputation is based on our high quality research work that is not compromised by any expressed ideology or political position.


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Motu’s environmental research is concerned with why and how humans benefit from, depend on, use, and affect the environment and natural resources.

Urban & regional

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Urban and regional economics discusses the difference between locations. In this section we discuss housing, the economic performance and regulation of cities, infrastructure, and regional economic differences.

Wellbeing & macro-economics

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Macroeconomics looks at fiscal and monetary policies and their effects, while well-being looks at outcomes such as income, life expectancy and sustainability.

Population & labour

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Population economics refers to research on individuals, families, households, and communities. Labour economics focuses on the world of work and covers people as workers as well as how firms behave as employers.

Human rights

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For human rights to improve, they need to be measured. The Human Rights Measurement Initiative is working to produce a free, easy-to-access database of thematic measures of human rights.

Productivity & innovation

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Motu is researching why firms, industries and regions are productive and how technological innovation works.