Homes for Generations

The Team

Dr Kay Saville-Smith

Dr Kay Saville-Smith is the director of CRESA and has built up over twenty-five years of expertise in community and social policy research with a focus on housing. In 2018 Kay was made a Member of the NZ Order of Merit for Services to Older People’s Housing Research. She is the Chief Science Adviser for the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development. She was a member of the Ministry Advisory Group on Housing and Urban Development, the Office for Senior Citizens’ Independent Advisory Group Reviewing the Positive Ageing Strategy; and Commission for Financial Capability’s review of retirement incomes.

In addition to this current programme she has led a number of public good science funded programmes or components, including: Finding the Best Fit – Housing, Downsizing and Older People in a changing Society – a three year research programme assessing the practicalities of downsizing and the conditions which determine successful transitions; Resilient Communities – Doing Better in Bad Times – a two year programme aimed at helping older people and their communities to be more resilient during adverse natural events and recover better after them; Good Homes – a five-year programme on older people’s repairs and maintenance needs in the context of ageing in place; the Sustainable Neighbourhoods Stream for BEACON Consortium; and the social science component of the Building Energy End-use Study (BEES) undertaken by BRANZ. She is also a trustee for the Marlborough Sustainable Housing Trust.

Dr Fiona Cram

Dr Fiona Cram is of Ngāti Pāhauwera descent and has a PhD in social and developmental psychology from the University of Otago. She has lectured in Social Psychology and has also been a senior research fellow at the International Research Institute for Māori and Indigenous Education, at the University of Auckland. In 2003 Fiona established Katoa Ltd – a Māori indigenous research organisation that undertakes Kaupapa Māori (by Māori, for Māori) research and evaluation, as well as offering a range of research and evaluation training. Fiona’s research interests are wide-ranging including Māori health, justice and education.


Dr Bev James

Dr Bev James has extensive experience in social research and evaluation, policy analysis, service design and working with community groups to develop evidence-based tools and solutions. She has held academic positions as well as management, research and policy positions in central and local government, and has been director of Public Policy & Research since 1998. Bev conducted research with older tenants for the Life When Renting research programme in the Ageing Well National Science Challenge and has worked in other public good science programmes about housing downsizing, repairs and maintenance, and community resilience. Bev is currently part of the Building Better Homes Towns and Cities National Science Challenge team focusing on affordable housing and the meaning of home.

Dr Tepora Emery

Dr Tepora Emery is a researcher, principal lecturer and Māori Research adviser at Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology, Rotorua. She has deep roots in the Te Arawa being affiliated to Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Rangiwewehi and Ngāti Whakaue.  On her father’s side she is from Ngāti Unu, Ngāti Kahu ki Maniapoto – Tainui waka.

With a rich learning, teaching and research background, Tepora has a holistic approach to her work; she believes that research and education, leading to critical understanding and awareness of dominant cultural, political and societal influences, is foremost to leading a full, rich and meaningful life. Through her work she encourages people to critically question and examine social, political and economic structures in order to deepen their consciousness and understanding of the world around them.  Creating, supporting and facilitating research and education pathways, opportunities and transformative outcomes for whānau, hapū, iwi and communities, is central to her work.

Ian Mitchell

Ian Mitchell leads the property advisory division of Livingston and Associates and has over twenty-five years’ experience in property consultancy. Prior to setting up Livingston and Associates’ property consultancy services he was the national director of Consulting and Research at DTZ and its predecessors including Darroch. Ian’s areas of expertise include mediation and arbitration services, quantitative and qualitative research, econometric modelling, property market forecasting, social and demographic profiling, financial feasibility analysis, project management, policy development and client relationship management. He has presented research papers at a number of international conferences and published articles based on his research in industry and refereed journals. Ian has also advised Ministers on a number of housing related issues. His most recent appointment was to a technical advisory group on shared equity reporting to the Minister of Housing and Finance under the previous government.

Dr Michael Rehm

Dr Michael Rehm is a Senior Lecturer in Property at the University of Auckland Business School. Michael’s research focus has been on the development of hedonic pricing models used to isolate and better understand specific behaviour of market participants within residential and office markets. His research incorporates geographic information systems (GIS) to model and explore the often underappreciated spatial relationships prevalent in property markets including work on school zoning, proximity to cell phone towers and leaky building stigma. Michael’s research on leaky buildings was featured in In the Leaky Building Crisis: Understanding the Issues, a book on New Zealand’s leaky building crisis. His latest research is on housing affordability and the impacts of inclusionary zoning on residential land development. Michael is a member of the American Real Estate Society and the Pacific Rim Real Estate Society. In 2011 he was appointed to the Editorial board of the Pacific Rim Property Research Journal.

Vicki White

Vicki White is a Research Scientist in the Building Performance team at BRANZ. She is an experienced social scientist with proficiency in both quantitative and qualitative research methods. Vicki’s expertise includes delivering and analysing national housing surveys, including the BRANZ House Condition Survey, which provided key evidence to inform development of the Healthy Homes standards for rental properties. Vicki’s research has focused particularly on housing quality issues, working with Stats NZ, MBIE and HUD to develop a framework for housing quality for New Zealand. She also brings experience from the UK in climate change, energy efficiency and energy hardship policy research. Her UK research focused particularly on modelling and understanding the distributional impacts of energy and climate change policies on consumers, identifying opportunities for retrofit, emissions reductions and alleviating energy hardship.

Dr Lynn Riggs

Dr Lynn Riggs is an economist at Motu Economic and Public Policy Research. She joined Motu after working for the US government for twenty years. Lynn’s research interests are in labour, health, education, and financial economics primarily using large, confidential data sets like Statistics New Zealand’s Integrated Data Infrastructure and Longitudinal Business Database. She has recently been involved in estimating the burden of disease attributable to unsafe and substandard housing conditions as well as an evaluation of the Healthy Homes Initiative.

James Berghan

James Berghan (Te Rarawa, Te Aupōuri) is a Lecturer in Urban Design at the University of Otago. His PhD thesis explored tradition-based principles of communal societies and how they are applied in contemporary urban papakāinga and cohousing developments. His research interests are wide-ranging and include indigenous methodologies, rangatahi/youth engagement, papakāinga, cohousing, and alternative housing and development models.

Anna Adcock

Anna (Ngāti Mutunga) has a MA in sociology, and is currently undertaking a PhD in health and wellbeing through Te Tātai Hauora o Hine Centre for Women’s Health Research at Victoria University of Wellington. Her professional speciality is Kaupapa Māori and community research using qualitative methods. Previous and current work includes exploring whānau experiences of intergenerational state intervention, exploring the lived realities of young Māori mothers (and how government groups talk about them), asset mapping with Iwi, and work to inform cervical screening and maternity/child health services in Aotearoa. Anna’s research interests centre whānau health and wellbeing, equity, and Kaupapa Māori Research.

Dr Ganesh Nana

Dr Ganesh Nana is Research Director at BERL, a first generation New Zealander, with a PhD in economics from Victoria University, Wellington. Ganesh joined BERL in a full-time position in 1998, after a few stints as a tutor, lecturer, researcher, and advisor both in New Zealand and England.  Ganesh was a member of the Welfare Expert Advisory Group that recently completed its report to Government on overhauling the social security system to make it fit for purpose for the coming decades.

BERL was the first economics consultancy established in New Zealand, and 62 years later remains an independent New Zealand-owned and operated enterprise.  Ganesh has driven the development of BERL to be a research-led consultancy. Ganesh’s kaupapa is to help BERL build further to more openly and robustly question and address the many burning platforms facing Aotearoa, its communities, businesses, and people – climate change, inequality, demographic upheaval, synthetic foods, gig economy to name just a few.

Dr Gauri Nandedkar

Dr Gauri Nandedkar is a researcher in the Affordable Housing for Generations National Science Challenge Team. Her work focuses on discourse analysis, science and policy interface, and how the way we talk about issues potentially affects policy outcomes. Gauri worked with the National Science Challenge Team in its first phase in the component ‘The Architecture of Decision-making’, exploring how politicians speak about  the housing crisis, the most common narratives in the public arena, and what the effects and implications of public discourses are on housing policy. Gauri is also a research associate in the National Institute of Demographic and Economic Analysis (NIDEA) at the University of Waikato, researching trans-Tasman migration. This research project focuses on the aspirations and desires of New Zealanders working and living in Australia.

Dr Patrick Barrett

Dr Patrick Barrett Is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Waikato where he researches and teaches on a variety of topics related to public policy in New Zealand. Patrick has written widely on questions of security and wellbeing as they relate to population ageing, frailty and disability in old age, ‘ageing-in-place’, and family care. This includes co-authoring two books on ageing and social care, ‘The Age of Supported Independence: Voices of In-home Care’ and ‘Family care and social capital: Transitions in informal care’. His current research interests include family care and population ageing; disaster politics, depoliticisation and the policy process; and narrative policy analysis.

Dr William Cheung

Dr William Cheung is a Senior Lecturer in Property at the University of Auckland Business School. His research focus has been on developing economic theories to understand the role of government as an institution in shaping a sustainable urban property market and its related sectors. William is a chartered surveyor at the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. Prior to his PhD study, William served as an economist at the HKSAR Government and worked as an assistant manager in the Asia Pacific Research Department at CBRE, a globally renowned real estate company. He was also the U.S. Fulbright scholar and the Australian government Endeavour research fellow. In 2018, he received the outstanding research postgraduate award and was appointed as an honorary fellow at the Ronald Coase Centre for Property Rights Research at HKUrban Lab in recognition of his research excellence in affordable housing and urban studies research.

Dr Elsie Ho

Dr Elsie Ho is Honorary Academic and former Associate Professor at the School of Population Health, University of Auckland. She is also Research Associate of Asian Family Services (AFS) and the Centre for Research, Evaluation and Social Assessment (CRESA). Elsie is a leading expert on Asian migration research and has published internationally in numerous refereed journals and books. In 2007 she was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) for services to migrant communities. Elsie’s research on acculturation has included various groups of Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) migrants, refugees and international students, with current research themes focusing on settlement and integration, family relations, housing, mental health and wellbeing.

Dr Tara Coleman


Tara is a researcher in the School of Environment at the University of Auckland. Her areas of expertise include health, urban and political geographies, photo-elicitation, interdisciplinary research frameworks and phenomenology. Her research to date has focused on empowering people in relation to housing, school, ageing in place, participation in research and long-term experiences of chronic illness.

Dr Nigel Isaacs

Dr Nigel Isaacs is a Senior Lecturer at the Wellington School of Architecture, Victoria University of Wellington where he teaches environmental science, heritage architecture and history of building technology. Nigel’s research has explored how energy is used in a wide range of building types, including homes, hotels, offices and shops. He led the BRANZ Household Energy End-use Project (HEEP) and the Building Energy End-use Study (BEES) looking at office and retail buildings. HEEP was the first national study of the how’s, why’s, when’s and where’s of household energy-use. It provided new knowledge on the way energy is used and the benefits, including indoor temperatures.

Nigel’s research includes evolution of the technology of building construction, which led to five series of programmes on Radio New Zealand (RNZ) National. He is currently researching the evolution of NZ building controls from the 1840s to the 1940s, and historic methods of moisture management in NZ houses.

Patricia Austin

Patricia is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Architecture and Planning. Her research focuses on planning and affordable housing, sustainable housing, eco-districts and eco-towns. Her research also includes planning for an ageing population, planning for disabled access, designing inclusive accessible built environments, crime prevention, safer cities and communities, planning and injury prevention, and strategies for more sustainable urban futures. She was an associate investigator for Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities Phase 1,  where she conducted research on the strategic research area Shaping Places: Future Neighbourhoods.