Past work

Discrimination Research

UMR Research conducted two research reports on the perceptions of racial discrimination in Aotearoa New Zealand on behalf of the Human Rights Commission.

Perceptions of Discrimination: UMR Research Report

The first of the reports was the 'Perceptions of discrimination' report which was published in 2006.

The Key findings of the report: 

  • Asians were, as in the 2001, 2003 and 2004 surveys, the people most likely to be seen as being discriminated against.
  • In prompted questioning, Asians also topped the list of those most likely to be identified as being discriminated against.
  • 30% of men thought that there was a great deal or some discrimination towards men and 67% thought that there was only a little or none at all. 
  • There was also a division of opinion on whether there was discrimination against Māori by ethnicity.  71% of Māori thought there was a great deal or some discrimination against Māori compared to 49% of non-Māori.
  • Older New Zealanders were only a little more likely than other groups to believe there was discrimination against their age cohort. 48% of New Zealanders 60 years plus thought there was a great deal or some discrimination against older people compared to 44% for all New Zealanders.

 Read the report

You can read the Perceptions of Discrimination: UMR Research Report here.

Perceived Discrimination in New Zealand: UMR Research Report 2007

The second of the two reports was the 'Perceived Discrimination in New Zealand' report which was published in late 2007.

The key findings of the report:

  • Percieved dicrimination was generally lower in 2007 than in previous years.
  • The proportions of respondents who believe that Asians, recent immigrants and refugees are discriminated against were easily at their lowest levels since trackingbegan in 2000.
  • However one area that respondents felt had significantly increased was  discriminaton based on income level.
  • 20% of respondents felt that they had been personally discriminated against in 2007. Of those people 37% felt that they were discriminated against by a government department or agency and 35% felt they were discriminated against by an employer or potential employer.


There are two sets of questions reported on in this research. One set of questions has been asked of the general public since December 2000 these questions focus on New Zealanders perceptions’ of which groups they feel are discriminated against in New Zealand. The results here are presented for 2007 and show the trend line that has emerged over the last six years.

The second set of questions are about personal discrimination that New Zealanders feel they may have faced themselves over the last year.  

Read the report:

You can read the Perceived Discrimination in NZ: UMR Research Report here.