Our team

The quality of our people is critical to our success. Our work relies on our team’s research and analytical skills, their ability to undertake high-quality analysis and shape that into influential policy advice.

We currently employ about 20 people and are committed to being a ‘good employer'. The Commission is governed by a Board that is accountable to Parliament and reports to the Minister of Finance. The Chair and Commissioners are responsible for the effective governance of the Commission and the overall health, wellbeing and sustainability of our organisation. They also oversee the delivery of our work programme and outputs. Meet our board and management team below...


The board

Dr. Ganesh Nana

Chair
Ganesh is a first-generation New Zealander, born, bred, and educated in Te Whanganui a Tara. His interest in economics originally emanated from his love of numbers, which in turn arose out of his passion for cricket.

Dr. Ganesh Nana

Chair

Ganesh is a first-generation New Zealander, born, bred, and educated in Te Whanganui a Tara. His interest in economics originally emanated from his love of numbers, which in turn arose out of his passion for cricket.

Ganesh took up the position of Chair of the Productivity Commission Te Kōmihana Whai Hua o Aotearoa after 22 years at the consultancy Business and Economics Research Limited (BERL). His work at BERL covered a broad range of projects. His highlight was efforts in strengthening relationships with Māori entities and organisations and building an understanding of te ōhanga Māori.

In 2018 he was appointed a member of the Government established Welfare Expert Advisory Group, which reported back in 2019 with Whakamana Tangata – Restoring Dignity to Social Security in New Zealand.

Prior to BERL, Ganesh acted as primary caregiver to his pre-school children while also employed as part-time lecturer at Victoria University. Before children, Ganesh managed to explore some parts of the world – including working in England as a researcher at the House of Commons gaining experience with IMF and OECD economic models. On his way home to Aotearoa he spent several months visiting family and ancestral lands across India.

Ganesh believes economics is fundamentally about people and is best reflected in our collective role as kaitiaki o taonga.

Dr. Bill Rosenberg

Commissioner
Bill was the Policy Director & Economist at the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (CTU) for over 10 years and currently holds a part-time role as CTU's Future of Work Director.

Dr. Bill Rosenberg

Commissioner

Bill was the Policy Director & Economist at the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (CTU) for over 10 years and currently holds a part-time role as CTU's Future of Work Director. As Economist at the CTU, Bill was a regular commentator in the media, and before that held technical and management positions in computing and e-learning services at Lincoln and Canterbury Universities.

He has been a member of the of the Tertiary Education Commission Board between 2006 and 2011, a member of the Government’s Independent Taskforce on Workplace Health and Safety, a member of Statistics New Zealand’s Advisory Committee for independent review of the CPI, and a member of the current Government’s Tax Working Group.

Bill is currently a Senior Associate at Victoria University’s Institute for Governance and Policy Studies. His recent research interests have focused on labour, income distribution and health funding. Bill has also published on social welfare policy, overseas investment, international trade, and media ownership. He has active interests in the future of work, industry policy and active labour market policy.

Bill’s appointment as a Commissioner runs from 1 September 2020 to 31 August 2024.

Dr. Diane Ruwhiu

Commissioner
Diane has a background in strategic operations and supply chain management, but today is a national tertiary education leader with a focus on Māori business and organisation and Indigenous business education.

Dr. Diane Ruwhiu

Commissioner

Diane has a background in strategic operations and supply chain management, but today is a national tertiary education leader with a focus on Māori business and organisation and Indigenous business education.

She is a researcher with Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga (Māori Centre of Research Excellence), and has recently finished working with a Science for Innovation and Technology research theme (National Science Challenge).

Diane brings a human-centred, pragmatic approach to growth and productivity, and has an overall positive outlook for New Zealand’s near future.

Management team

Dr. Philip Stevens

Director, Economics & Research
Philip is an economist with twenty-years’ experience of economic and social research in the university, independent and public sectors. He joined us from the Ministry of Education, where he was GM Analysis, Research & Evaluation | Po­­ārahi Wananga Matua.

Dr. Philip Stevens

Director, Economics & Research

Philip is an economist with twenty-years’ experience of economic and social research in the university, independent and public sectors. He joined us from the Ministry of Education, where he was GM Analysis, Research & Evaluation | Po­­ārahi Wananga Matua. Prior to that he held a similar role at MBIE, as well as Manager and Chief Advisor of Economic Strategy in MBIE and MED­. Before coming to New Zealand, Philip was a Research Fellow at the National Institute of Economic and Social research in London.

Philip has published in leading peer-reviewed international journals on subjects such as: productivity analysis; employment; competition; evaluation; the measurement of performance in the public sector; broadband; R&D and human capital.

Philip has a Doctorate in Economics from the University of Oxford, a Master of Arts in Economics from the University of Leeds, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Public Policy from Leeds Metropolitan University (First Class).

Catherine Proffitt

Inquiry Director
Catherine has a background in policy and strategy, with over 14 years’ experience working in and consulting to the public sector.

Catherine Proffitt

Inquiry Director

Catherine has a background in policy and strategy, with over 14 years’ experience working in and consulting to the public sector. Immediately prior to joining the Commission, Catherine was Head of Policy at FrankAdvice, where she led a range of policy consulting work across different areas including health, education, working conditions, pay equity and local government. Before that, Catherine led the strategic planning and performance function at Pharmac. 

Catherine holds a Masters in English Literature (first class Honours), Bachelors of Arts and of Business, Commerce and Administration, and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Public Management, all from Victoria University of Wellington.

Julian Wood

Inquiry Director
Julian is an applied labour economist with over 10 years’ experience in the public and independent sectors. Prior to joining the Commission, Julian was a Senior Researcher for an independent think tank where he focused on research into regional development, immigration and innova…

Julian Wood

Inquiry Director

Julian is an applied labour economist with over 10 years’ experience in the public and independent sectors. Prior to joining the Commission, Julian was a Senior Researcher for an independent think tank where he focused on research into regional development, immigration and innovation policy.

Julian is fluent in Chinese and has entrepreneurial experience from helping to run a beef cattle farm in rural China for 5 years.

Julian holds a Master of Social Science (First Class Honours) and a Bachelor of Social Science (in economics and labour trade union studies) from the University of Waikato.