Dr Lara Marie Greaves

PhD, MSc, BA(Hons)


Lara (Ngāpuhi, Pākehā, Tararā) is a senior lecturer in New Zealand Politics and Public Policy. 

Lara is part of large survey teams that work on the New Zealand Election Study (as a co-lead), New Zealand Attitudes and Values Study, the Youth19 Rangatahi Smart Survey, and the Manalagi project. 

Lara is one of the editors of Government and Politics in Aotearoa and New Zealand (Seventh Edition; Oxford University Press). Across 2020-21 she has made over 200 appearances in national and international media. 


Research | Current

My current research interests include:

Voting, Political Attitudes, & Behaviour: NZ politics, voter turnout, political polling, public opinion research and views on policies, referenda, participation.

Māori Politics & the Māori Electorates: The Māori roll/seats, Māori support and participation. I'm especially interested in Māori views on the classic political science topics, e.g., voter turnout: why participate in a colonial system?

Survey, Longitudinal, & Quantitative Methods: Sampling, longitudinal research, non-response (overall non-response, item non-response, retention), online survey methods (and privacy concerns), making survey methods more responsive to Māori needs. Indigenous data sovereignty. 

- Sexual Orientation: Measuring sexual orientation (behaviour, attractions, identity), heteronormativity, well-being and sexual orientation, political attitudes and sexual orientation, intersectionality.

My current projects include:

The New Zealand Election Study

A 30-year old study of New Zealand voters. In 2020, I led data collection for the latest wave of the study. 

The Māori in-between? Identity, health, and social service access needs

Health Research Council (2020-2022)

Nō hea koe? Translated as “where are you from?” is a common question in Te Ao Māori. In the answer, one expresses their identity links to people, places, and Iwi. This answer is important for health and well-being: a strong cultural identity has been shown to buffer against the effects of racism and continued colonisation. However, tracing whakapapa can be fraught with difficulties, meaning that a segment of the Māori population may feel they fall in between mainstream social service providers and Kaupapa Māori or Iwi-based providers. This research seeks to explore differences between Māori in cultural connection, mainly focusing on those who do not know their Iwi, but also including other combinations of descent, ethnicity, and Iwi affiliation. Using the Statistics New Zealand Integrated Data Infrastructure, the research links identities to health and social service access use in order to provide profiles of different health/well-being needs within Māori.

Repression or Rangatiratanga? Investigating why Māori choose the General or Māori Electoral Roll

Marsden Fast start (2021-2024)

Māori roll or general roll? Every five years New Zealanders of Māori descent get to choose. Researchers, Indigenous groups, and policymakers worldwide often look to Aotearoa as a unique case study in Indigenous representation because we have had the Māori roll for over 150 years. Yet, if everyone of Māori descent was on the Māori roll, there would be 13 Māori electorates: there are currently only 7. Indeed, this fact is often used by commentators and politicians as a reason to abolish the roll. An increase in Māori electorates means more Māori representatives, and probably more Māori political power: so why do Māori make the roll choices that they do? Researchers are yet to actually ask Māori. This qualitative survey research will explore Māori views: do Māori see the electorates as a means of asserting Māori sovereignty (rangatiratanga), or as a legacy of colonial rule (repression)? Or do people choose the Māori or general roll for other reasons altogether? The aim of this research is to find out why Māori make their electoral roll choice. The findings will inform debate about the future of these electorates, and help to ensure effective political representation for Māori, and Indigenous peoples worldwide.

Teaching | Current

POLITICS 107 New Zealand Politics

POLITICS 229 Mana Māori Motuhake / Māori Politics and Public Policy

POLITICS 756 New Zealand Government

Postgraduate supervision

I am interested in supervising postgraduate students who are interested in NZ/Māori politics and policy and/or those who would like to work with quantitative or survey data. 

Committees/Professional groups/Services

NZ Political Studies Association Postgraduate Representative (2015/16/17); Māori Representative (2018-)

Selected publications and creative works (Research Outputs)

As of 29 October 2020 there will be no automatic updating of 'selected publications and creative works' from Research Outputs. Please continue to keep your Research Outputs profile up to date.
  • Greaves, L. M., Barlow, F. K., Huang, Y., Stronge, S., Fraser, G., & Sibley, C. G. (2017). Asexual identity in a New Zealand national sample: Demographics, well-being, and health. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 46 (8), 2417-2427. 10.1007/s10508-017-0977-6
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Chris Sibley
  • Greaves, L. M., Barlow, F. K., Lee, C. H. J., Matika, C. M., Wang, W., Lindsay, C. J., ... Cowie, L. J. (2017). The diversity and prevalence of sexual orientation self-labels in a New Zealand national sample. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 46 (5), 1325-1336. 10.1007/s10508-016-0857-5
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Danny Osborne, Chris Sibley, Carla Houkamau, Sam Manuela, Cinnamon Lindsay Latimer, Correna Matika, Carly Townrow, Joseph Bulbulia
  • Greaves, L., Houkamau, C., & Sibley, C. (2015). Identity and Demographics Predict Voter Enrolment on the Māori Electoral Roll: Findings from a National Sample. San Diego, USA. 3 July - 5 July 2015. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Carla Houkamau, Chris Sibley
  • Greaves, L. M., Milojev, P., Huang, Y., Stronge, S., Osborne, D., Bulbulia, J., ... Sibley, C. G. (2015). Regional differences in the psychological recovery of Christchurch residents following the 2010/2011 earthquakes: A longitudinal study. PLoS ONE, 10 (5)10.1371/journal.pone.0124278
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Chris Sibley, Danny Osborne, Joseph Bulbulia
  • Greaves, L. M., Osborne, D., Sengupta, N. K., Milojev, P., & Sibley, C. G. (2014). Politics and post-colonial ideology: Historical negation and symbolic exclusion predict political party preference. New Zealand Journal of Psychology, 43 (3), 39-54. Related URL.
    Other University of Auckland co-authors: Danny Osborne, Chris Sibley