Centre of Methods and Policy Application in the Social Sciences

An experienced team undertaking quantitative social science research of international standing and with policy relevance. Our vision is to undertake cutting-edge research to improve the lives of New Zealanders.

Who we are


A team of quantitative social scientists and analysts based within the Faculty of Arts at
the University of Auckland.


COMPASS offices are on Level 2 of the
Fale Pasifika Complex at 20 Wynyard Street.


We receive funding from New Zealand research funding agencies, government departments, University of Auckland funding sources, and other funders.

What we do






We use simulation to model
population changes over time
and to test 'what-if' scenarios.

Whole Population
Data Analysis
We analyse data from
the entire New Zealand
population to understand
health and social functioning.


We now run the People's
Online Panel for New Zealand,
and we conduct surveys for
the International Social Survey Programme.



Research Methods Training
We run social science
research methods courses
each year as the New Zealand
Social Statistics Network.

Social research projects


We work on a number of other projects as well, which do not fit so well in those categories.

Seminar series


We host seminars during term time, on topics in the social sciences and statistics.



Student projects

Graduation_hats 2

We have a tradition of hosting students undertaking Honours and Masters dissertations, as well as Summer Scholars each year, and PhD candidates.


Research publications


We have published a large number of journal articles, book chapters, and technical reports.



Research colloquia

PhD Conference 2017 (17)

Research colloquia

We run annual colloquia showcasing our research to a public sector audience in Wellington.


Data archiving


We curate an online data repository of social sciences surveys conducted in New Zealand, now within the University's Figshare implementation.



Advisory board


We maintain an Academic Advisory Board, which guides COMPASS's overall strategic direction through biannual meetings.


Useful links


We have established ties with a number of groups and organisations over the years.