Research and evidence

Disability research involves creative and systematic activity to increase disability-knowledge. It is regularly carried out by researchers in academia, disabled people, disability and community organisations, and government agencies.

Disability research can be conducted using a range of approaches and methods but it is critical that disabled people are central at all stages of the research process. Evidence gathered through high quality disability research is often translated into meaningful insights to inform and transform policy and practice.

This section includes evaluations. of research that has been undertaken.

Examples of reports 

  • Statistics NZ - Measuring Inequality for disabled New Zealanders
    Measuring inequality for disabled New Zealanders: 2018 compares a range of home, economic, and social outcomes for disabled and non-disabled people in New Zealand.

  • Disabled Person-led Monitoring of the UNCRPD Project
    Website explaining what is meant by disabled person lead monitoring research and holds a summary of the work undertaken to date. The website includes links to the monitoring reports published.

  • Ministry of Justice/Waitangi Tribunal - Māori Health Disability Statistics Report (PDF)
    This publication presents aggregated demographic information about the people with disabilities who have been allocated Ministry of Health funded disability supports during a 12-month period to September 2018. The report presents demographics relating to specific service types including home and community support, carer support, supported living, respite, behaviour support, choices in community living, individualised funding, enhanced individualised funding, funded family care, community residential, younger people in aged residential care, day services and high and complex framework. The report also presents the demographic information by specific disability types including physical, intellectual, autism spectrum disorder, neurological and sensory disabilities, and includes some comparisons with the Ministry’s disability demographic report published in 2016.

  • Department of Internal Affairs – Digital Inclusion User Insights – Disabled People
    The research report — Digital inclusion user insights — Disabled people — gives disabled people a voice and outlines their lived experience in terms of being digitally enabled. It outlines 5 key findings which could help improve the design of websites and online services, making an impact on how disabled people experience digital.

  • Child Poverty Action Group – Early childhood education and barriers to inclusivity (PDF)
    This backgrounder considers pre-school children with disabilities and their access to and participation in ECCE in Aotearoa New Zealand. It highlights problems associated with their rights to equal participation in early childhood education alongside their non-disabled peers and looks at the troubling relationship between targeted funding for attendance and exclusion.

  • Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet – Child and Youth Strategy (PDF)
    An overaching framework for central government policy development to support achieving the vision of 'making New Zealand the best place in the world for children and young people.

  • New Zealand Health and Disability System Review- Health and Disability System Review Final Report (PDF)
    Report on the Health and Disability System Review which recommends system level changes to improve equitable outcomes for New Zealanders. Chapter 8 covers disability and uses the 2013 NZ Disability Survey and Disability Support Services Data

  • Enabling Good Lives - Waikato demonstration evaluations
    Enabling Good Lives is a partnership between government agencies and the disability sector aimed at long term transformation of how disabled people and families are supported to live everyday lives. These reports are for the Waikato demonstration, but Enabling Good Lives is also in Christchurch and further information is available on the EGL website. 


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