Legislation

New NZ Data and Statistics Legislation is in the Pipeline

A number of things happened in 1975.  Microsoft was founded (or Micro-soft as it was apparently then known), the mood ring was invented, the movie Jaws was released, Robert Muldoon became New Zealand’s Prime Minister and the Statistics Act 1975 came into law.

While this piece of legislation has been modified over the years, it is essentially legislation for last century when statistics were produced in hardcopy, and issues of privacy were very different from today. In fact, the current legislation doesn’t even refer to data. It is no longer fit for purpose, and is being reviewed.

The aims of the updated data and statistics legislation is for it to be:

  • Ahead of the game: modern and future focused
  • Treaty partnership reflected
  • Data recognised as a strategic and precious asset
  • Safeguards and protections in place.

As the consultation process moves forward, it will be interesting to see how the new data and statistics legislation applies to publically-funded data collected and used by the tertiary education sector – both for research and core business purposes. The tertiary and research sectors will have input into the new Act’s development. You can find out more about the work here.

The current legislation dates from a bygone era.
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