Publications

Explore reports, public information sheets and briefings produced by the Office of the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor. The publications are divided into three types: reports, public information sheets, and briefings. Publications are listed from newest to oldest within each section.

You can also browse by topic on our topics page

Looking for publications from Sir Peter Gluckman’s tenure? Check out the archives page for historical reports

Publications produced by interns, fellows and seconded scholars affiliated with the Office can be found on our internships page.

Reports

 

COVID-19 papers

Prepared under urgency

COVID-19 and vitamin D – 2 June 2020

Produced by Cherie Tollmache, one of our MacDiarmid interns, this report summarises the evidence for a link between vitamin D status and COVID-19 severity.

Download the ‘COVID-19 and vitamin D’ report (PDF, 867KB)

COVID-19 vaccines – 21 May 2020

A summary of COVID-19 vaccine development efforts including the different approaches, potential challenges, and the current frontrunners. This is a living document that will be regularly updated.

Download the ‘COVID-19 vaccines’ report (PDF, 793KB)

COVID-19 and seasonality – 18 May 2020

Produced by Stephen Lo, one of our MacDiarmid interns, this report examines the role of climate and weather in the transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

Download the ‘COVID-19 and seasonality’ report (PDF, 375KB)

Is SARS-CoV-2 airborne? – 14 May 2020

This short summary describes research investigating whether an airborne transmission route is possible for SARS-CoV-2 and what role this might play in the progression of the pandemic.

Download the report ‘Is SARS-CoV-2 airborne?’ (PDF, 191KB)

Serology testing for COVID-19 antibodies – 29 April 2020

Focusing specifically on antibody testing, this review builds on the paper below led by Professor Michael Bunce, Chief Scientist at the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) – Te Mana Rauhī Taiao.

Download the report ‘Serology testing for the presence of antibodies against COVID-19’ (PDF, 496KB)

Testing for COVID-19 – 30 March 2020

A commissioned review on COVID-19 testing methods, produced under urgency by lead author Professor Michael Bunce, Chief Scientist at the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) – Te Mana Rauhī Taiao. This is a living document that will be updated regularly.

Download the report ‘Testing for COVID-19’ (PDF, 880KB)

Download the appendices for the report (PDF, 2.41MB)

Brain, behaviour and justice

29 January 2020

What were they thinking? A discussion paper on brain and behaviour in relation to the justice system in New Zealand is the fourth in a series of reports.

Download the report ‘What were they thinking?’ (PDF, 3MB)

View all reports in Dr Ian Lambie’s justice series

Rethinking plastics

8 December 2019

Our first major report outlines a vision for rethinking plastics in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Explore our online content to help you rethink plastics

Download the full ‘Rethinking plastics’ report (PDF, 27MB)

Download the key messages (PDF, 8MB)

Download the ‘At a glance’ summary (PDF, 2MB)

 

Mahi Tahi 1 – Annual report 2019

July 2019

See what Juliet and the team got up to in the first year.

Download Mahi Tahi 1 (PDF, 2MB)

Family violence in New Zealand

November 2018

‘Every 4 Minutes: A discussion paper on preventing family violence in New Zealand’ is the third in a series of reports related to the criminal justice system.

Download the ‘Every 4 Minutes’ report (PDF, 2MB)

See all reports in the justice series by Dr Ian Lambie

Public information sheets

Discover more info on our regularly updated ‘Emerging hot topics’ page

 

Myrtle rust

January 2020

Myrtle Rust arrived in Aotearoa New Zealand in 2017 and is a threat to a number of native plant species. We’ve pulled together some accessible summary information on myrtle rust in the New Zealand context.

Download the myrtle rust explainer (PDF, 2MB)

View the web version of the myrtle rust explainer

5G in Aotearoa New Zealand

29 November 2019

As 5G begins its roll out in Aotearoa New Zealand, lots of people are asking what exactly 5G is and what it will mean for our country, our health, and our way of living. There are many legitimate questions to ask around the safety of any new technology, and there is also a lot of misinformation around 5G. To address this, we have launched a webpage providing information on 5G.

Visit the 5G webpage here

Download the 5G information sheet (PDF, 968KB)

Antimicrobial resistance

September 2018

Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is an imminent threat to Aotearoa New Zealand.

Download the antimicrobial resistance information sheet (PDF, 467KB)

View the web version of the antimicrobial resistance info sheet

Briefings

COVID-19

Advisory information provided to the Prime Minister as part of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Download the May advice bundle (PDF, 693KB)

Download the April advice bundle (PDF, 6MB)

Read the March advice bundle (PDF, 611KB)

At the frontline: Thoughts from Professor Ian Lambie

22 April 2020

A summary of Professor Ian Lambie’s conversations with the frontline in South Auckland during the COVID-19 pandemic. This snapshot document was put together under urgency and is not a formal evidence synthesis. Professor Ian Lambie is the Chief Science Advisor for the justice sector.

Download the brief ‘At the frontline’ (PDF, 1MB)

Gene editing

12 August 2019

The Royal Society Te Apārangi has released its comprehensive report on gene editing. Juliet provided a briefing to the Prime Minister on the report.

Read Juliet’s briefing to the PM on gene editing (PDF, 1020KB)

Christchurch shooting

31 May 2019

This briefing was provided to the PM by way of a summary of the Rapid Response Issue (RRI) of the New Zealand Psychology Journal dedicated to reflections on the immediate aftermath of the Christchurch shooting. The briefing was prepared at pace by Juliet Gerrard (PMCSA), Marc Wilson (Journal Editor), Ian Lambie (Chief Science Advisor for Justice) and Stuart McNaughton (Chief Science Advisor for Education).

Download the briefing (PDF, 376KB)

Read the full RRI issue of the New Zealand Psychology Journal

 

Science and the development of NZ standards

8 May 2019

The Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs asked the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor to work jointly with the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment (MBIE) on how science is currently treated in the New Zealand standards setting process, and how this can be improved.

Download the external review of standards setting (PDF, 1MB)