What strategic uncertainties keep Kiwis awake at night?

The survey by the institute, an independent think tank specialising in research and policy analysis, asked executives what “strategic uncertainties keep you awake at night” with regard to:

1. the future of your business?
2. the future of Christchurch (post earthquake)?
3. the future of New Zealand?

Responders to the first question were predominantly concerned about government decision-making, followed by global issues such as economic trends, human resources, declining oil reserves and adapting business practice to an evolving society. Responses to Question 2 addressed the strategic uncertainties associated with the rebuilding of Christchurch and the need for responsible decision-making.

Responses to Question 3 were largely concerned with the need for strategic planning for the country as whole, with focus on environmental, social and economic uncertainties. Interestingly, peak oil (the point at which when the maximum rate of global petroleum extraction is reached, after which production enters terminal decline) was more commonly shared strategic concern than climate change or the brain-drain.

The common theme across all three questions was strategic uncertainty over the quality of government decision-making, says Wendy McGuiness, chief executive Sustainable Future Institute. “The responses imply government should work harder to improve long-term planning and public consultation,” she says.

“This research illustrates the nature of the strategic uncertainties that are likely to drive change in New Zealand over the coming months and years. The challenge lies in gaining clarity over these uncertainties and then applying our resources and skills in such way that we not only reduce the uncertainties, but invite dialogue and implement constructive change, so that New Zealand becomes more robust and sustainable nation.”

A full copy of the survey report can be downloaded here.


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