Research papers

Advocating for heritage at all levels is critical for Heritage New Zealand.  Research relevant to heritage and heritage management is part of our advisory role.

Assessment of Earthquake prone policies

Towards Improving National and Local Action on Earthquake-prone Buildings

Since the early days of New Zealand settlement, buildings have been designed to withstand earthquakes.  Despite successive improvements in building technology and building code standards, many existing buildings are at risk from earthquakes.  In these buildings, people may be harmed or even killed in the event of a substantial earthquake.

This report (pdf, 505 kb) examines the policy context of managing heritage buildings that are earthquake-prone.  It reviews international agreements, national and international contexts and guidance available from various agencies, examines the development of New Zealand's building code and looks at current civil defence planning. 

National assessment of RMA policies and plans 2016

National Assessment of RMA Policy and Plans - Heritage Provisions

The national assessment provides an overview of Resource Management Act (RMA) district plan provisions relating to historic heritage.  This enables comparable assessments and tracking of progress to protect historic heritage by local authorities in New Zealand.

Heritage New Zealand published previous national assessments of RMA heritage policy and plan provisions in January 2009, November 2011 and June 2013.

In addition to the standard indicators from 2009 and 2011 used in earlier assessments, the 2015 national assessment (pdf, 653kb) has included a closer examination of the risks to historic heritage and district plan provisions that promote building safety, such as earthquake strengthening, fire safety and improved physical access.  The 2015 national assessment has also provided more specific information about NZ Heritage List properties that are scheduled in regional and district plans.