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New Zealand currently lacks a research centre with the interdisciplinary expertise and partnerships to drive effective health system integration. Building on the the success of its predecessor, the Centre for Health Systems, the Centre for Health Systems and Technology (CHeST) acts as a platform to draw together and focus different parts of the University of Otago on health systems, technology, and related integration implementation questions.

Our research focuses on integrated care implementation, which is a defining health system and technology challenge of our time. Our strengths lie in effective collaborations across research, policy, and practice, allowing us to focus on the applied end of health policy and system improvement. With the Divisions of Health Sciences and Commerce involved, CHeST represents an important multidisciplinary partnership.

Our vision is to be a world class research hub bringing together academic, community, clinical, and policy expertise from across New Zealand and internationally, place CHeST and the University of Otago at the forefront of health system and technology research, and establish us as the leading centre of our kind in Australasia.

CHeST has five major themes, each led by a high-profile researcher with a group of associates:

  • Health care delivery
  • Health systems architecture, management, and performance
  • Health quality, safety, and community engagement
  • Health workforce
  • Health technology

Each theme has pre-existing links with external partners and funders including key policymakers, district health boards, primary health organisations, alliances, and others in the public and private sectors.


CHeST aims to:

  • Facilitate and promote research into health systems improvement
  • Bring together and co-ordinate the activities of those with health systems interests, and build a multidisciplinary, cross-campus grouping with national and international links
  • Partner with District Health Boards, Primary Health Organisations, and other providers in projects of mutual interest that will benefit the health system and service


CHeST undertakes a number of key activities which support the growth of research capacity within the University and with external partners:

  • Annual research symposiums on selected topics. Intended outcomes of such meetings include research articles and new researcher-led research and funding proposals with an interdisciplinary and cross-theme focus
  • Periodic theme research meetings to present work in progress to the broader CHeST membership and community
  • Establishing and supporting a network for interdisciplinary health systems and technology postgraduate students
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