About Us

Complex social issues deserve quality evidence to enable better informed decisions. Decision-makers need to know what works and what doesn’t.
Our purpose is to increase the use of evidence by people across the social sector so that they make better decisions – about funding, policies or services – to improve the lives of New Zealanders, New Zealand’s communities, families and whanau.

What we do
We work across the wider social sector to:

promote informed debate on the key social issues for New Zealand, its families and whanau, and increase awareness about what works
grow the quality, relevance and quantity of the evidence base in priority areas
facilitate the use of evidence by sharing it and supporting its use in decision-making.
Who we work with
We work with those who fund, create or use social science evidence including policymakers, programme developers and funders, researchers, evaluators and practitioners.

We work across the wider social sector with people who are based in central and local government, academic, community and iwi-based organisations, and are tackling complex issues across key social policy areas like social development, housing, health, education and justice.

Our priorities
To influence providers and funders to do and fund research and evaluation that is useful to policymakers and programme developers.

To influence the development of sustainable research and assets and infrustructure that will support good social science research and it’s availability.

To commission and do good social science research and evaluation where there are critical gaps in the evidence base that are not being filled elsewhere.

To make social science research and evidence easier to access and understand.

To stimulate awareness of evidence, its importance and the big social issues for New Zealand.

To actively support the use of evidence by decision makers in the social sector.

Knowledge Exchange Forums

Superu periodically holds Knowledge Exchange Forums (KEFs) on priority social issues.

The aim of these forums is to bring together experts from policy, research and/or practitioners to identify knowledge gaps around the selected topic. These forums provide an opportunity for interaction, exchange and mutual learning among the participants.

The intention of these forums is to encourage the use of evidence to address social issues important to New Zealand families and whanau.

Family Violence Knowledge Exchange Forum
On 16 September 2014 Superu brought together 28 participants from universities and government to explore new ways of addressing family violence. Learn more in the KEF report and the annotated bibliography of the reading pack provided to participants.

Intimate partner violence and the workplace

This Issues Paper, by the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse, aims to raise awareness of intimate partner violence (IPV) as a matter that has serious implications for the workplace.

The paper highlights the need for employers to see the perpetrator’s behaviour as the problem rather than penalising or holding the victim accountable. It also highlights emerging approaches that can be used by employers and the government to fulfil their responsibilities to employees and to wider society.

Read the full report here: https://nzfvc.org.nz/issues-papers-7

Superu funds the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse. It delivers quality evidence to inform cross-sector family violence prevention strategies.

Growing Up in New Zealand

Growing Up in New Zealand is a longitudinal study that collects information about children’s development in the context of their families, their communities and the wider physical, social and cultural factors they are exposed to during their lives.

The study follows the lives of approximately 7,000 Kiwi children. Click here for more information.

Policy briefs
Policy briefs provide relevant and accessible information on specific issues. The first two policy briefs are now available.

Keeping our children injury-free (September 2014)

Nutrition and physical activity during pregnancy (September 2014)

Topic reports
The reports use the study’s data to focus on important policy topics and undertake an in-depth analysis of a particular issue.

Residential Mobility Report 1: Moving house in the first 1000 days (December 2014)
This report describes how often and how far New Zealand children are moving at the start of their lives.

Vulnerability Report 1: Exploring the Definition of Vulnerability for Children in their First 1000 Days (July 2014)

This report evaluates how commonly New Zealand children experience 12 family and environmental risk factors that have previously been shown to increase the chances that children will have poor developmental outcomes.

Comprehensive reports
These reports provide comprehensive information on the cohort (the group of children being studied) and are produced at key milestones in the cohort’s development.

Growing Up in New Zealand: Now we are two (June 2014)
Now We Are Two provides insight into the physical health and development, emotional and behavioural well-being, and cognitive development of New Zealand two-year-olds.

Growing Up in New Zealand: Now we are born (March 2012)
This report details the beginning of the children’s journeys in the context of their families and their wider environments.

Growing Up in New Zealand: Before we are born (November 2010)
Before we are born paints a complex picture of a changing New Zealand and shows not only the hopes, dreams and realities faced by soon-to-be-parents, but also the increasing diversity of our families and their children.

Are you a researcher interested in using the data?
Data collected as part of the study is available to researchers. We want the data to be used as widely as possible, informing policy and research decisions. A great deal of useful information has been collected about the children, and in some cases their mothers and the mothers’ partners. By accessing the data you will be able to gain a better understanding of what has led to particular outcomes.

The data is anonymised so study participants can’t be identified. The data is linked, where applicable, to public health records such as perinatal information.

What’s available:

Antenatal data set

9 month data set

For more information about accessing study data, click here to access the Growing Up in New Zealand data access guide.

More about the study
The Growing Up in New Zealand study tracks approximately 7,000 New Zealand children from before birth. The study describes what it is like to grow up in contemporary New Zealand in the 21st century.

The Study has several unique features:

It started before the children were born so useful information has been collected about the mother’s behaviour and her intentions for the future.

The mother’s partners have been involved in the study, which provides a useful and sometimes different perspective on the child.

The cohort has representation from European, Maori, Pacific, Asian and other ethnic groups to ensure that New Zealand’s cultural diversity is captured.

There are six ‘domains’ of the study: education, culture and identity, psychological and cognitive development, health and wellbeing, social context, and family and wellbeing. This multi-disciplinary approach means the information collected can be used by a wide range of agencies, governmental and non-governmental, to address cross sector issues.

About us

New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse

The New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse is the national centre for collating and disseminating information about domestic and family violence.
Superu funds the University of Auckland to operate the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse.

Superu’s vision is to be the centre of excellence for knowledge about New Zealand families and whānau. Working with the NZFVCH is part of that vision to ensure we can advocate for the interests of families from a strong evidential base.

Having access to quality information is critical to ensuring family violence prevention strategies and initiatives have the greatest impact possible and can assist cross-sector consistency in approaches to family violence prevention.

Campaigns such as our White Ribbon Campaign to end violence against women and the It’s not OK Campaign will benefit from fast and efficient access to the best evidence from around the world.

The Clearinghouse draws on the expert leadership and academic excellence exemplified by Dr Janet Fanslow, whose work has contributed greatly to understanding family violence in New Zealand, and Associate Professor Robyn Dixon, who has extensive experience in leading multidisciplinary teams in research and evaluation projects.

We’re now called Superu

From 1 December 2014, the Families Commission started operating as the Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit, or Superu for short.

We still have a focus on families and whanau. We are making the change because it better reflects HOW we do what we do. In early 2014, the legislation that governs us changed to give us the additional responsibilities of monitoring and evaluating programmes and interventions in the social sector, and to provide social science research into key issues, programmes and interventions.

In a nutshell, we’re responsible for finding out what works for families and whanau. Complex social issues deserve quality evidence to enable better-informed decisions. Decision-makers need to know what works and what doesn’t.

Our purpose is to increase the use of evidence by people across the social sector so that they make better decisions – about funding, policies or services – to improve the lives of New Zealanders, New Zealand’s communities, families and whānau.

We look forward to working with you, whether we have worked with you in the past or will soon work with you in the future. And we’re always keen to hear from you. We can be contacted on 04 917 7040 or by email

Privacy, copyright & terms of use

Copyright
Material featured on this site, including downloadable documents, is copyright to the Families Commission (operating as the Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit, or Superu for short) unless otherwise indicated. The copyright-protected material may be reproduced free of charge for noncommercial personal use without requiring specific permission. This is subject to the material being reproduced and attributed accurately and not being used in a misleading context. Requests and enquiries concerning the reproduction of information on this website for any purpose other than personal use, requires permission from Superu. Please contact us to discuss your specific requirements.

The permission to reproduce copyright-protected material does not extend to any material on this site that is identified as being the copyright of a third party. Authorisation to reproduce such material must be obtained from the copyright holders concerned.

Published by the Families Commission (operating as Superu)
2013 © Crown Copyright

Licensed for use under the New Zealand Government Open Access and Licensing (NZGOAL) framework.

This does not give you permission to use Superu’s logo in any way that breaches the Flags, Emblems and Names Protection Act 1981.

This license excludes any information copyright to a third party that is on our site or is linked to from our site.

Privacy policy
Use of personal information
All personal information that you give us via this website (http://www.superu.govt.nz) will be kept confidential as required under the Privacy Act 1993. Your personal information will only be used for the purpose for which it was given, including for our own research or reporting and as otherwise specified on the website. Except with your consent or as required by law:

you will not be identified in our research or reports
we will not pass on your personal information to any other person or organisation, other than our agents or contractors who will deal with it on the same basis as us.
Access to personal information we hold about you
You can ask us to give you any information that we hold about you and to make any changes to that information that you request.

Our contact details to request personal information:
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (04) 917 7040

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Home

Welcome to the Social Policy Evaluation and Research Unit, or Superu for short

You may have known us in the past as the Families Commission. We are still focused on families and whānau, and have changed our name so it better reflects what we do.

Our purpose is to increase the use of evidence by people across the social sector so that they can make better decisions – about funding, policies or services – to improve the lives of New Zealanders, New Zealand’s communities, families and whānau.

We work across the social sector to:
• promote informed debate on key social issues for New Zealand, its families and whānau, and increase awareness about what works
• grow the quality, relevance and quantity of evidence in priority areas
• facilitate the use of evidence by sharing it and supporting its use in decision-making.

New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse

Superu funds the New Zealand Family Violence Clearinghouse. It delivers quality evidence to inform cross-sector family violence prevention strategies.