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Setting national research priorities

The Health Research Council (HRC) has a leading role in implementing New Zealand's first unified set of health research priorities.

The New Zealand Health Research Prioritisation Framework document cover

Together with the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE), we are bringing the vision of the New Zealand Health Research Strategy (2017-2027) to life. After wide consultation with New Zealanders, we are now delighted to present the New Zealand Health Research Prioritisation Framework which will drive New Zealand's health research investment decisions from now until 2027.

This framework is key to ensuring that research efforts across the country are aligned and designed to address areas of highest need. It prioritises how and why health research needs to be done in New Zealand in order to drive high-level health and social outcomes, and ensure maximum impact from the government’s investment in health.  

Under the new framework, researchers applying for government funding will need to:

  • Address why their research is important to New Zealand
  • Consider mana tāngata and advancing Māori health
  • Meet the criteria of excellence
  • Ensure their research has the best chance of delivering impact
  • Include measures to improve health equity.

Implementing the NZHRS and the Prioritisation Framework is the joint responsibility of MBIE, the Ministry of Health and the HRC. Further engagement with research funders and providers will take place in the new year. In the meantime, you can find both English and Te Reo Māori versions of the framework here in the HRC's Resource Library.

For background on how we came to this model, and who and what was involved, check out our blog below which began in 2018 and has continued to be updated as the consultation process progressed. 


Prioritisation background - consultation process

  • Setting New Zealand's Health Research Priorities - Agreement On The Process

    Issue date:

    Consultation on the proposed process for setting health research priorities is now complete.

    Public consultation took place between 5-19 March 2018, and 64 stakeholders participated. Overall there was good support for the proposed process with 58% of submissions agreeing that the process will identify the right health research priorities for New Zealand.

    A summary of the consultation feedback and revised process can be found here. Every care was taken by the New Zealand Health Research Strategy (NZHRS) Implementation Steering Group to ensure all feedback was considered.

    Your input on the priorities themselves will be sought later in 2018 and 2019. Keep checking this page for updates and details on future consultation.

  • Background Consultation Documents

    Issue date:

    The New Zealand Health Research Strategy (NZHRS) sets out to ensure New Zealand has a world-leading health system. In keeping with that, health research investment needs to be prioritised through a broad-ranging and inclusive priority-setting process.

    Consultation on the proposed process for setting these priorities was recently undertaken: these documents were part of that consultation, outlining the proposed process and how it was developed. 

  • Consultation Results

    Issue date:

    This document contains the results of the recent consultation into the proposed process for setting NZ's health research priorities. It also outlines the revised process.

  • Review Process

    Issue date:

    If after reviewing the revised process, people felt that important feedback wasn’t fully addressed, they were able to share their concerns between 2 - 16 May. All concerns expressed were reviewed by the NZHRS Implementation Steering Group and the outcome of the process is available for review here.

  • Statement From The NZHRS Implementation Steering Group

    Issue date:

    This statement from the NZHRS Implementation Steering Group outlines the rationale for changes made to the proposed process for setting national health research priorities, resulting from the consultation that took place. It offers their endorsement of the process as robust and fit-for-purpose.