Find out more about New Zealand’s constitution in this suite of valuable resources. These resources go into greater depth on general constitutional matters and on the topic areas themselves.

The bibliography is broken down by topic area, according to the logic of the booklet 'New Zealand's Constitution: The Conversation So Far'. There is also an initial section of general reading.

The views expressed in these materials do not represent the views of the Panel or the Government.

We see this list as a developing resource. If you have ideas for further additions, please feel free to suggest them.

General Reading - Books

Angelo, Anthony H. Constitutional Law in New Zealand (Alphen aan den Rijn, The Netherlands: Kluwer Law International, 2011)

Bingham, Tom, The Rule of Law (London, UK: Penguin Books, 2011)

Joseph, Philip A. Constitutional and Administrative Law in New Zealand (Third Edition) (Wellington, New Zealand: Brookers Ltd, 2007)

King, Michael, The Penguin History of New Zealand (Auckland, New Zealand: Penguin Books, 2003)

McGee, David, Parliamentary Practice in New Zealand (Wellington, New Zealand: Dunmore Publishing, 2005)

Miller, Raymond, New Zealand Government & Politics (Fifth Edition) (Auckland, New Zealand: Oxford University Press, 2010)

Morris, Caroline, Jonathan Boston & Petra Butler (eds.), Reconstituting the Constitution (London, UK: Springer, 2011)

Mullholland, Malcolm & Veronica Tawhai, Weeping Waters: The Treaty of Waitangi and Constitutional Change (Wellington, New Zealand: Huia Publishers, 2010)

Orange, Claudia, The Treaty of Waitangi (Wellington, New Zealand: Bridget Williams Books, 2011)

Palmer, Geoffrey & Matthew Palmer, Bridled Power: New Zealand’s Constitution and Government (Fourth Edition) (Melbourne, Australia: Oxford University Press, 2004)

Shaw, Richard & Chris Eichbaum, Public Policy in New Zealand: Institutions, processes and outcomes (Second Edition) (Auckland, New Zealand: Pearson, 2008)

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Our Constitution

Cartwright, Dame Silvia, ‘Our Constitutional Journey’ Speech to the Legal Research Foundation, Auckland, 9 May 2006

Elias, Chief Justice Sian, ‘Fundamentals: a constitutional conversation’ Harkness Henry Lecture, University of Waikato, 12 September 2011

Keith, Rt. Hon. Sir Kenneth, ‘On the Constitution of New Zealand: An Introduction to the Foundations of the Current Form of Government’ in The Cabinet Manual, 1990, updated 2008

Keith, Rt. Hon. Sir Kenneth, ‘New Zealand’s Constitution – Is it brilliant or odd?’ Law Commission – 20th Anniversary Seminar, 25 August 2006

McSoriley, John, ‘The New Zealand Constitution’ (Wellington, New Zealand: NZ Parliamentary Library, 2000, updated 2005)

Palmer, Matthew S.R. ‘New Zealand Constitutional Culture’ New Zealand Universities Law Review, Vol. 22, 2007

Palmer, Matthew S.R. ‘Constitution’ Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, 18th May 2012

Round, David J. ‘Two futures: a Reverie on Constitutional Review’ Otago Law Review, Vol. 12, No. 3, 2011

Wilson, John, 'Nation and government - The Constitution', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, 28th September 2011

Rishworth, Paul, ‘New Zealand’ in Dawn Oliver & Carlos Fusaro (eds.) How Constitutions Change: a Comparative Study (Oxford, UK: Hart Publishing, 2011)
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Electoral Matters

The size of Parliament

Herr, Richard, ‘Democracy and Small Parliaments: Some Diseconomies of Scale’ Democratic Audit of Australia, 2005

Peterson, Dana Rachelle, ‘Size of the House of Representatives: 120 or 99 MPs?’ (Wellington, New Zealand: NZ Parliamentary Library, 1999)

Report of the Justice and Electoral Select Committee, Electoral (Reduction in Number of Members of Parliament) Amendment Bill (Wellington, New Zealand: House of Representatives, 2005)

The term of Parliament and the election date

Dodek, Adam M. ‘The Past, Present and Future of Fixed Election Date Legislation in Canada’ Journal of Parliamentary and Political Law, Vol. 4, 2010

Hazell, Robert, ‘Fixed Term Parliaments’ (London, United Kingdom: The Constitution Unit, 2010)

McGee, David, ‘Chapter 9: Summoning, Proroguing and Dissolving Parliament’ in Parliamentary Practice in New Zealand (Wellington, New Zealand: Dunmore Publishing Limited, 2005)

Parliamentary Library paper on fixed and flexible terms of Parliament, February 2013

Number and size of electorates

Beever, Graham, ‘The New Game with the Old Rules: Boundary Determination Under MMP’ Victoria University of Wellington Law Review, Vol. 34, 2003

Elections New Zealand, ‘Electorate Boundaries’

McGee, David, ‘Chapter 2: Electoral’ in Parliamentary Practice in New Zealand' (Wellington, New Zealand: Dunmore Publishing Limited, 2005)

Electoral Integrity Legislation

Fraenkel, Jon, ‘Party-hopping laws in the southern hemisphere’ Political Science, Vol. 64, No. 2, 2012 Access Required

Geddis, Andrew, ‘Proportional Representation, ‘Party Hopping’ and the Limits of Electoral Regulation: A Cautionary Tale from New Zealand’ Common Law World Review, Vol. 35, No. 1, 2006

Report of the Justice and Electoral Select Committee, Electoral (Integrity) Amendment Bill (Wellington, New Zealand: House of Representatives, 2006)

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Crown - Māori Relationship Matters

Māori representation in Parliament

Geddis, Andrew, ‘A Dual Track Democracy? The Symbolic Role of the Māori Seats in New Zealand’s Electoral System’ Election Law Journal, Vol. 5, No. 4, 2006

Joseph, Philip A., 'The Maori Seats in Parliament' (Wellington, New Zealand: New Zealand Business Roundtable, 2008)

Moon, Paul, ‘A Proud Thing To Have Recorded’: The Origins and Commencement of National Indigenous Political Representation in New Zealand through the 1867 Maori Representation Act' Journal of New Zealand Studies, No. 16, 2013 (

Waitangi Tribunal, ‘Maori Electoral Option Report’

Xanthaki, Alexandra and Dominic O’Sullivan, ‘Indigenous Participation in Elective Bodies: the Maori in New Zealand’ International Journal on Minority and Group Rights, Vol. 16, No. 2, 2011

Māori representation in local government

Dalziel, Paul, Hirini Matunga and Caroline Saunders, ‘Cultural Well-being and Local Government: Lessons from New Zealand’ Australasian Journal of Regional Studies, Vol. 12, No. 3, 2006

Hayward, Janine, ‘Mandatory Māori wards in local government: Active Crown protection of Māori Treaty rights’ Political Science, Vol. 63, No. 2, 2011

Human Rights Commission, ‘Māori Representation in Local Government: the Continuing Challenge’ (New Zealand: Human Rights Commission Te Kāhui Tika Tangata, 2010)

Local Government Commission, ‘Review of the Local Government Act 2002 and the Local Electoral Act 2001 Background Paper: Local Authority Engagement with Māori’ June 2008$file/ReviewLGactMaoriEngagementReport.pdf

Potaka, Tama, ‘A Treaty Agendum for Local Government’ Victoria University of Wellington Law Review, Vol. 29, No. 1, 1999

The role of the Treaty of Waitangi

Hayward, Janine, ‘The Principles of the Treaty of Waitangi’ in Professor Alan Ward (ed.) National Overview: Volume ii (Wellington, New Zealand: Waitangi Tribunal, 1997)

Jackson, Moana, ‘Speech to Health Care Aotearoa Hui: Te Tiriti is No MOA’ 2009 Health Care Aotearoa National Hui

Ministry of Culture & Heritage, ‘The Treaty in Practice’ NZ History Online, updated 20th December 2012

Orange, Claudia, ‘The Treaty of Waitangi’ Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, 5th June 2012

Palmer, Matthew S.R. 'The Treaty of Waitangi in New Zealand’s Law and Constitution' (Wellington, New Zealand: Victoria University Press, 2008)

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Other Constitutional Matters

Butler, Petra, ’15 Years of the Bill of Rights: Time to Celebrate, Time to Reflect, Time to Work Harder?’ Victoria University Human Rights Research, 2006

Commission on a Bill of Rights, ‘A UK Bill of Rights? The Choice Before Us’
Volume 1:
Volume 2:

Elliot, Mark, ‘Interpretive Bills of Rights and the Mystery of the Unwritten Constitution’ University of Cambridge Faculty of Law Research Paper, No. 51, 2011

Harris, Bruce, ‘The Constitutional Future of New Zealand’ New Zealand Law Review, 2004

Huscroft, Grant and Paul Rishworth, ‘ ‘You Say You Want a Revolution’ Bills of Rights in the Age of Human Rights’ in D Dyzenhaus, M Hunt, G Huscroft, (eds.) A Simple Common Lawyer: Essays In Honour Of Michael Taggart (Oxford, United Kingdom: Hart Publishing, 2009)

Keith, Rt. Hon. Sir Kenneth, ‘The New Zealand Bill of Rights Experience: Lessons for Australia’ 2002 Bill of Rights Conference, 21st June 2002

Minister of Justice, 'A Bill of Rights for New Zealand: A White Paper' (Wellington, New Zealand: Department of Justice, 1985)

Ministry of Justice, ‘Section 7 of the New Zealand Bill of Rights Act’

Palmer, Sir Geoffrey, ‘The Bill of Rights After 21 Years: The New Zealand Constitutional Caravan Moves On?’ New Zealand Journal of Public and International Law, Vol. 10, No. 2, 2012.

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