Research collaborations

The Healthy Research and Ageing Team has research collaborations with organisations worldwide.

National research collaborations

Otago University

Professor Steve La Grow and Dr Andy Towers are collaborating with Professor John Sullivan and his team from the School of Physiotherapy (University of Otago).  In 2013 their team received a $49,000 grant from the Lottery Health Research fund to explore the degree to which older New Zealanders utilise mobility aids, and investigate the degree to which factors enhance/reduce their positive impact on older adults’ mobility and functioning.

Dr Joanne Taylor is a Named Investigator on a 2015 HRC grant ($1,193,921) based in the Injury Prevention Research Unit at Otago on driving cessation in older adults. The project is titled “Older drivers, families, and GPs: Navigating the path between mobility and safety”. The study will involve interviews of older drivers, their families, and GPs to better understand travel patterns, driving behaviours, and fitness-to-drive issues. This study’s findings will help develop evidence-based policy and programmes to address mobility and safety, to maintain independence through driving for as long as safely possible, and identify assistance needed by support networks to manage driving cessation and minimise negative consequences.

University of Auckland

In 2008, Dr Joanne Taylor included a module on driving anxiety in the second data wave of the Health, Work and Retirement study.  Dr Taylor will follow up these findings by investigating the impact of driving cessation on the health of older New Zealanders with data from the 2012 survey, and is hoping to conduct a larger study on driving cessation in the near future. Our collaborators on this application are experts in ageing, health, and driving cessation, including Professor Martin Connolly (Freemasons’ Professor of Geriatric Medicine, Department of Geriatric Medicine, University of Auckland) and Professor Nancy Pachana (School of Psychology, University of Queensland), as well as an international advisory panel of experts in the field.

Dr Joanne Taylor continues to collaborate with Professor Martin Connolly (Freemasons’ Professor of Geriatric Medicine, Department of Geriatric Medicine, University of Auckland) on the driving anxiety data collected across various Health, Work & Retirement survey waves.

Dr Andy Towers is currently developing a project with Associate Professor Janie Sheridan from the School of Pharmacy and Dr David Newcombe from the School of Public Health (University of Auckland) which seeks to undertake joint secondary analysis of the NZLSA dataset specifically targeting health outcomes from reported alcohol consumption in the presence of prescription medication use.

Waikato University

Dr Juliana Mansvelt has been involved in a collaboration with Waikato researchers on a FRST-funded project on engaging senior stakeholders (2009-2012).  This team included Professor Ted Zorn (PI, now PVC of the Massey Business School at Massey), Dr Mary Simpson, Dr Margaret Richardson, Professor Peggy Koopman-Boyden, and Dr Michael Cameron.

New Zealand Health Promotion Agency (HPA)

Dr Andy Towers was asked by the New Zealand Health Promotion Agency (HPA; the merging of the Alcohol Advisory Council and the Health Sponsorship Council), to deliver the HPA-sponsored keynote address to the 17th Annual New Zealand National Addiction Treatment Conference (Sept, 2012), on HART research into the rates of older hazardous drinkers in New Zealand. Following this presentation Dr Towers was asked by Dr Andrew Hearn (HPA General Manager Research, Policy & Advice) and Margaret Chartres (Senior Research Advisor) to present this research to their own research team, as a prelude to discussing avenues for potential research collaboration with the HART team.

International Research Collaborations

Australia/New Zealand Ageing Research Consortium (ANZARC)

In November 2010 researchers from New Zealand’s primary ageing research HART hosted the principal investigators and key staff from Australian and New Zealand ageing research projects for a two-day meeting.  This one-off meeting resulted in an ‘in-principal’ agreement to develop an alliance called the Australia/New Zealand Ageing Research Consortium (ANZARC).

The first collective output will be a joint body of publications comparing trans-Tasman national-level policy and data on progress and trends concerning significant health and ageing issues.

Researchers from the following groups were invited:

New Zealand    

  • The New Zealand Longitudinal Study of Ageing (NZLSA)
  • Life and living in advanced age: A cohort study in New Zealand (LILACs NZ)


  • The Australian Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ALSA)
  • Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health (ALSWH)
  • Melbourne Longitudinal Surveys of Healthy Ageing (MELSHA)
  • Ageing Babyboomers in Australia (ABBA)
  • The Personality and Total Health (PATH) Through Life
  • Dynamic Analyses to Optimise Ageing (DYNOPTA)

World Health Organisation                  

  • Study on Global Ageing and Adult Health (SAGE)

University of Liverpool

Dr Juliana Mansvelt is working in collaboration with  Dr Elizabeth Evans from the University of Liverpool to use data from the Health, Work & Retirement study to conduct a comparative study of factors which might influence access to shopping facilities and spaces for older persons across England and New Zealand.

National data users

Dr Grant Scobie, New Zealand Treasury, is using our data to investigate older New Zealanders' living standards, labour force participation, wealth accumulation and retirement incomes.

Dr Michael Naylor and Fialupe Lotoala, School of Economics and Finance, Massey University, have analysed our data to explore ethnicity and retirement wealth.

Roy Lay-Yee, Research Fellow, Auckland University, used our data to inform the Primary Care in an Ageing Society Study, led by Professor Peter Davis.

Auckland Council researchers are using New Zealand Longitudinal Study of Ageing data for respondents living in council boundaries.

We also provide data to:

  • Government agencies (eg Ministry of Health, Ministry of Social Development, Department of Internal Affairs)
  • Local councils
  • Health and healthcare providers (eg district health boards, private health organisations
  • Community and social service providers and advocacy groups (eg Age Concern, home care providers, Retirement Villages Association)
  • Professional bodies (eg New Zealand Association of Gerontology)