Course 1:

The insider’s guide to New Zealand government

This is our most popular course. It provides a comprehensive and enjoyable introduction to New Zealand government. It’s ideal for people new to working in the public sector, as well as those seeking a refresher to help fill in some missing pieces.

Crucially, this course gives people context, i.e. how they fit into the machinery of government, what their relationship is with their minister, what Parliament does, and the role the courts play in scrutinising decisions made by ministers, officials, and MPs.

Course overview

This course explores the building blocks of New Zealand’s system of government: the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government.

It explains the essentials of New Zealand’s unique system of government, drawing on academic research and government publications such as the Cabinet Manual and Parliament’s Standing Orders. It uses a mix of interesting case studies and group discussion to help demonstrate theory in action and to aid learning.

We understand what you want to get out of a machinery of government course: a clear understanding of what central government looks like, how the pieces of the puzzle fit together, and how you fit in. So we’ve carefully tailored our training material so that you get exactly what you need.

The course provides a strong grounding for people new to the New Zealand public sector, as well as for those seeking a refresher.

Modern government requires extensive collaboration between government agencies on policy and operational matters and this course helps participants see the big picture of New Zealand government. It is also critical that people working in the state sector understand the different roles of Parliament and the courts (for example, the High Court’s power of judicial review). Both Parliament and the courts act as a check on executive power and officials should have an appreciation of what those powers are how they relate to the work officials do.

At the end of the course you will have a good understanding of:

  • the checks and balances that come through the ‘separation of powers’
  • what ‘parliamentary government’ means, and the impact on policy and legislation decisions
  • what ministers do and how they are supported by Public Service Departments, Crown Entities, and other agencies
  • the principles that guide the conduct of state servants, including political neutrality and trustworthiness
  • how parliamentary scrutiny of ministers and officials takes place within a politically charged environment
  • why courts cannot strike down legislation passed by Parliament, but can check executive power through ‘judicial review’ of statutory decisions made by ministers and officials.
Course fee

The fee for course 1 The insider’s guide to New Zealand government is $680 + gst per person.

Dates and booking info

Course 1 The insider’s guide to New Zealand government will be held on the following dates in Wellington:

  • 28 February 2020 (Friday) – click here for the booking page.

This course is fully catered, with tea and coffee on arrival, morning tea, lunch, and afternoon tea.

We cater to all dietary requirements, for example vegetarian, vegan, gluten free, and dairy free. You can let us know about any dietary requirements when you book.

Can you run this course in-house for us?

Yes, this course can easily be run in-house within an agency. The course content can be customised to make it specific to your organisation.

If this sounds like you, then get in touch with us and we can talk through the options.

Brilliant. Should be standard as induction to public service.

course participant

I arrived thinking it was going to be a long 7 hours, but in the end I loved it!

course participant

Very engaging! Ryan made a real effort to take note of what ministries we were from and to use appropriate examples to relate the information back to us.

course participant

Very interesting, presented in a fun and easy to follow way. Really helped me put the work I do into context and understand better the work that goes on around me. Really enjoyed the whole course!

course participant

It was very informative, delivered in an engaging way, and opened up for lots of debate. Very worthwhile for anyone new to the public sector.

course participant

Lots of useful information even after working in government for some time! Great session and delivered on what was promised.

course participant

A very refreshing, entertaining and honest delivery. Very informative and it was good to have CERA specific examples so I could relate the theory to real life.

course participant

Really good depth. Touched on all the important bits and went into depth in the appropriate areas without droning on – great! Kept it light and fun, really good at allowing for questions and answering.

course participant