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Rethinking New Zealand's National Security

Wednesday 8 February 2023

Governments the world over are taking a hard look at the national security strategies, reappraising how they plan for – and are less reactive to – their ever-changing geopolitical environment, the multiplicity and interconnectedness of emerging threats, and the risks that social fragmentation and a declining economic situation might create.

The fourth Otago National Security School combines national security practitioners with leading New Zealand and international academics to address such issues as; how states are rethinking their strategies from the bottom up to account for the role of cybersecurity, disinformation, and the changing landscape of counterterrorism; how narratives about risk and threat thread into planning and execution of national security strategies; how in particular smaller and medium sized states are synchronising their national security policy making; the part economics plays in national security; and corresponding issues like the oversight of intelligence agencies and how indigenous rights can be respected in decisions about national security.

Programme – National Security School 2023 (PDF)


  • Mr Tony Lynch – Deputy Chief Executive of the National Security Group, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Associate Professor William Hoverd – Director, Centre of Defence and Security Studies, Massey University
  • Sir Terence Arnold – Justice of the Supreme Court of New Zealand
  • Ms Victoria Walker – Assistant Director, Geneva Centre for Security Sector Governance (on Zoom)
  • Mr Andy George – Counter Terrorism Strategic Co-ordinator, Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  • Associate Professor Joe Burton – University of Nottingham (on Zoom)
  • Dr Sanjana Hattotuwa – Research Fellow, The Disinformation Project and Special Adviser, ICT4Peace Foundation, Switzerland
  • Ms Carolyn Tremain – Chief Executive, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (on Zoom)
  • Ms Melanie Mark-Shadbolt – Deputy Secretary, Tūmatakōkiri (Māori Rights and Interest), Ministry of Environment
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