Policy Buzz with Lisa Johnston

Kia ora everyone and welcome to the first Johnson Group Policy Buzz, a fortnightly snapshot of hot topics in the New Zealand public sector. Firstly I’d like to introduce myself, my name is Lisa Johnston and I have recently started with the Johnson Group as a Recruitment Consultant in the contracting team. I studied politics and policy at Victoria University and like to have my finger on the pulse with what’s going on in parliament and new things happening in the public sector!


The last two weeks have been quite an interesting time, with the launch of the new Ministry of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) (quite the catchy name) on October 1st.  It is aiming to "restore the basic right to healthy, affordable housing for all New Zealanders" and will involve a lot of cross-agency collaboration which could see some new projects opening up across the board. Kiwibuild portfolio falls under HUD which should certainly keep them busy, as well as having a high profile in news coverage.


Speaking of cross-agency collaboration, the State Sector and Crown Entities Reform Bill has been a popular topic, with the idea of services and agencies working collaboratively toward a shared policy goal being one of the main themes throughout. I have spoken to a lot of public servants over the last few weeks that are excited about the change and feel it will enable them and their departments to operate more efficiently and provide better outcomes for New Zealanders. IPANZ quarterly magazine, Public Sector, has dedicated their latest issue to the topic of state sector reform and has some very interesting discussion pieces around the history of The State Sector Act, and MPs and academics thoughts on what a more collaborative and connected public sector may look like. If you’ve got a copy sitting around in your office break room then it’s definitely worth a read! The State Services Commission has opened a formal response process for anyone that is interested, it can be accessed here if you would like to get involved.


I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas about the reform bill, how to do you think it will impact you? Do you think its good/bad/unnecessary? Do you think the reform proposals go far enough? Comment your thoughts below!


I’ll be back discussing the latest updates after the long Labour weekend, Heoi anō tāku mō nāianei!


If you’d like to follow me on social media and keep up to date with what I’m working on with the Johnson Group, and what’s happening in the public sector you can via LinkedIn and Twitter.


Lisa Johnston - Sales Consultant | 




Policy Buzz