The Shift Aotearoa is a three-day conference that will take place from 5-7 June 2019 at Te Papa in Wellington. It is designed to shift momentum towards a well-functioning housing system – one where every New Zealander is well-housed.
Led by the latest research from Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) and international researchers – as well as case studies from community housing practitioners in Aotearoa New Zealand – the conference will seek to develop a platform for cross-sector action on housing.
The inaugural event will bring together policymakers, researchers, planners, analysts, Māori and community housing providers, builders and those in the construction and finance sectors – together with community representatives and rangitahi – to articulate the beginning of a collaborative human rights and Te Tiriti o Waitangi-based housing strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand.
The first day of the event is a Māori Housing Think Tank, followed by two days focussing on the role of community, Māori and the community housing sector and why these sectors offer much-needed solutions for housing in New Zealand.
“The Shift is a UN movement that is all about housing being at the core of inclusive, thriving communities,” explains Challenge Director Ruth Berry. “The conference is designed to help New Zealand make this shift.“
In order to achieve this, BBHTC will share research to inform evidence-based decision making in the community housing sector and, together with Community Housing Aotearoa (CHA), will work with conference participants to co-create the draft housing strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand.
“Māori have a key role to play,” says Challenge Director Māori Dr Jessica Hutchings. “Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua will present research that explores the social function of whenua, land and housing.”
Key speakers at the conference include Paul Hunt, Chief Commissioner, NZ Human Rights Commission, Moana Jackson keynote on Te Tiriti o Waitangi Rights, Human Rights and Professor Christine Whitehead, London School of Economics, Professor Emeritus in Housing Economics.
Meanwhile, the conference will also play host to the Australasian Housing Institute Professional Excellence in Housing Awards Dinner, sponsored by Housing New Zealand, to showcase the tremendous achievements being delivered.
“A well-functioning housing system would elevate the role that not-for-profit housing providers play in delivering truly affordable homes to rent and buy, for the missing middle who aren’t eligible for public housing, yet who can’t afford the market,” says CHA chief executive Scott Figenshow.
“The strategy that will be developed during the course of this event will be the beginning of delivering a human-rights based national housing strategy. We know that the conference will prove the potential of community housing providers to deliver a substantial increase in affordable housing across New Zealand.”
Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities Background
Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities (BBHTC) is one of 11 National Science Challenges, funded by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Enterprise (MBIE). Since BBHTC launched in May 2016, the Challenge has funded more than 100 research projects from scientists across both public and private institutions – into New Zealand’s built environment. BBHTC undertakes world-class research to shape New Zealand’s built environment and strengthen communities. The Challenge develops findings that will empower public, planners and policymakers with reliable information and new tools for fresh thinking and better decisions. The Challenge is discovering new pathways across four research areas: urban wellbeing, Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua (Māori housing), affordable housing and supporting regions to thrive. For more information, head to http://www.buildingbetter.nz/
Community Housing Aotearoa Background
Community Housing Aotearoa (CHA) is the peak body for New Zealand’s community housing sector. Our 90 provider members house approximately 25,000 people nationally across 13,000 homes. Our 19 partner members include developers, consultants and local councils. Our Vision is to make sure every New Zealander is well-housed in a warm, safe, dry and affordable home. This is a basic human right. We work to support the growth and development of community housing providers to enable them to provide affordable and social housing. We want to demonstrate that community housing is a critical element alongside private and government owned housing. No one can do it alone. For more information, head to https://communityhousing.org.nz/