Current projects

Our aim is to increase the use of evidence in the social sector so that better decisions can be made – about funding, policies or services – to improve the lives of families, whānau and communities in New Zealand.

The use of evidence can change people’s lives.  We are working on the following projects because they will provide useful evidence for people working in the social sector to change the lives of New Zealanders.

Date published: 30 Jun 2015

The wellbeing of families and whānau is an essential cornerstone for maintaining healthy, happy and productive individuals who are the backbone of a flourishing country.

Superu’s Families and Whānau Status Report is published annually and measures how New Zealand families and whānau are faring across a range of wellbeing indicators.

The Families and Whānau Status Report is published in accordance with the Families Commission Amendment Act 2014. 

Date published: 16 Dec 2016

In 2012, the Prime Minister’s Youth Mental Health Project (YMHP) was established to address concerns about mental health vulnerability in young people.

The YMHP promoted the mental health and wellbeing of young people with or at risk of developing mild to moderate mental health issues. It consisted of 26 initiatives across the Ministries of Health, Education, Social Development and Te Puni Kokiri.

Superu led the strategic evaluation of the YMHP as a whole. The evaluation is part of a wider move by government to assess how effectively government policies and practices are being applied.

Date published: Feb 2015

Growing Up in New Zealand is a longitudinal study. It collects information about children’s development in the context of their families, whānau and communities, and about the physical, social and cultural factors they are exposed to as they grow up.

The purpose of the study is to provide evidence about what shapes children’s early development so every New Zealand child can have the best start in life.

The study started in 2008 and is funded by the government. It is based at the University of Auckland’s Centre for Longitudinal Research – He Ara ki Mua and the contract for the study has been managed by Superu since 2013.

Date published: 9 Feb 2017

Complex social issues need good quality evidence, and decision-makers need to know what works.

Superu managed the Ministerial Social Sector Research Fund until October 2017. The Fund is used to respond to research and evaluation questions from Ministers about social sector issues.

Here are the research projects we completed in that time:

Date published: 22 Jun 2017

The government is expanding the use of social investment to improve life outcomes for New Zealanders, and reduce future costs to government. The use of evidence in decision-making is essential to the success of the social investment approach.

The Using evidence for impact programme has responded to the needs of govenment agencies and the community and voluntary sector, through the provision of practical tools and guidance to improve the sector's approach to collecting and using evidence.

Date published: 2015

Superu has a legislative mandate to ‘identify evidence and research that will assist in determining or achieving the Government’s policies and priorities in the social sector’. With this in mind, we have developed a set of research directions for the social sector¹.

Date published: 2015

NOTE: Superu managed the contract for the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse, the national centre for research and information on family and whānau violence, until 1 November 2017.

Date published: 22 Aug 2017

The Superu Children and Familes Research Fund is dedicated to funding policy-relevant research using external data from the Growing Up in New Zealand (GUiNZ) study. It provides researchers with an opportunity to explore and shape social policy that supports children and their families, whānau and communities. Applications for the second round are now open and close on 20 October 2017. Funding totaling $750,000 is available in this funding round.

Date published: 4 Dec 2015

The Publishing Protocol is for all government agencies carrying out, commissioning or communicating social science research and evaluation. It sets out good practice principles for publishing government social science research and evaluation. It helps ensure that research is published consistently and is readily available so that everyone benefits from the Government's investment in it.

The good practice principles are:

Last update: 22 Jun 2018