Our Research

Wellbeing & macro-economics

Macroeconomics looks at fiscal and monetary policies and their aggregate effects, while wellbeing looks at outcomes such as income, life expectancy and sustainability.

Outcome measures may include typical macroeconomic concerns such as GDP, unemployment, inflation, balance of payments and exchange rates, but can also include wellbeing measures like life expectancy and life satisfaction. Sustainability measures may also be an important focus.

Our research focus

Motu’s current and recent research focus includes:

  • Examining measures of aggregate wellbeing and sustainability – funded by a Royal Society of New Zealand Marsden Fund grant.
  • The effects of culture on economic performance.
  • The value of culture and heritage activities for regional and national outcomes.
  • Effects of the exchange rate on exporting activity.
  • Effects of central bank policies on financial and economic outcomes.
  • Impacts of aggregate credit shocks on the housing market.
  • Tax structures (including effective marginal tax rates for firms, and scope for a land tax).


Working Paper

Working Paper


Working Paper

Related Websites

Much of Arthur Grimes' work on wellbeing and sustainability is conducted in conjunction with researchers from Waikato, Auckland and Lincoln universities.

Work on taxes is conducted together with researchers from Victoria University of Wellington and the Treasury.