Search the site by keyword

Final report - A fair chance for all

The Government asked the New Zealand Productivity Commission Te Kōmihana Whai Hua o Aotearoa (the Commission) to conduct an inquiry into economic inclusion and social mobility, to generate new insights about the dynamics and drivers of persistent disadvantage and develop recommendations for system changes to give all New Zealanders a fair chance to live better lives.

The inquiry A Fair Chance for All: Breaking the cycle of persistent disadvantage focused on the overall settings of the “public management system”, taking a whole of system view, rather than assessing policies and services in one or two government sectors.

The final report on the inquiry, found people experiencing disadvantage and those trying to support them are constrained by powerful system barriers. Barriers include siloed and fragmented government agencies and short-termism. These barriers make it very hard for those experiencing persistent disadvantage to escape and can even make single-factor or temporary problems worse. Most people can overcome setbacks by drawing on their personal and family networks, and community and government systems. But those systems don’t work well for everyone.

The recommendations in the Commission’s report fall into three main areas of the public management system - purpose and direction, accountability and learning and voice. They are an interconnected and reinforcing package that build on system change already underway. 

The main recommendations are:

  • Gain cross-party agreement to develop and implement generational (20- to 30-year) strategic wellbeing objectives.
  • Establish a social floor - a baseline standard of living and quality of life expected in New Zealand. 
  • Broaden the values within the public management system to give better effect to te Tiriti o Waitangi.
  • Introduce a Social Inclusion Act and establish a Parliamentary Commissioner for Future Generations.
  • Review and re-focus public accountability settings to address critical gaps and ensure they are fit for purpose to address complex challenges like persistent disadvantage.
  • Build a more responsive, relevant, and accessible public management system that learns and empowers community voice, and values evidence from people and communities experiencing disadvantage.
  • Commit to long-term funding to support more locally led, whānau-centred and centrally enable ways of working.
  • Invest in data collection for measuring wellbeing and disadvantage over a life course, between generations, and within different communities.


Filter publications by topic.

Load more publications