The Research Strategy creates an environment to maximise the benefits from transport-related research and contributes to the delivery of a transport system that improves wellbeing and liveability.

The Strategy provides a framework for fostering a better research environment that emphasises collaboration, maximises the economic and social benefits of the transport system and minimises harm.

The Transport Research Strategy gives clear guidance on the direction for transport research, provides a set of recommended research priorities aligned with transport outcomes, and outlines how the diverse research community can collaborate into the future.

The Research Strategy includes five inter-related enablers to support the generation and use of transport evidence, these include:

  1. Improve access: research inputs and results are available to the wider community
  2. Improve governance: there is coordination and prioritisation of research activities and funding opportunities
  3. Investing in the right research which includes the 3-Step for knowledge development and prioritisation
  4. Facilitate collaboration: there is a systematic approach to building and maintaining interests in transport research
  5. Develop capacity and capability: there is a thriving research community with the necessary capacity and capability to produce high-quality research

The Research Strategy is an updated version of the Transport Research Strategy, originally published in 2016 along with the Transport Domain Plan.  These documents have now been fully superseded by the Transport Evidence Base Strategy.


The Ministry of Transport assists outstanding New Zealand students to undertake research in fields that are deemed to be of importance to New Zealand’s transport sector. In 2020 the Ministry awarded six graduate research scholarships – more detail can be found here

Recent publications

In December 2019 the report Academic Research and Policymaking for Transport: Insights from Aotearoa New Zealand was released.  This was prepared by Dr Debbie Hopkins, Associate Professor in Human Geography, University of Oxford, on behalf of the Ministry of Transport, as part of an Academic Secondment between 2017-2019.  The report presents the findings of a series of workshops with New Zealand-based transport academic researchers, and policy teams at the Ministry of Transport and is available for download below.

The Ministry maintains a spreadsheet of transport-related research underway and completed in New Zealand - The Transport Research Register is updated twice yearly and is available below.  It is anticipated that this will be superseded by the New Zealand Research Information System (NRIS) in the future.