NZ On Air regularly undertakes research designed to inform our work as an agency and as a resource that the wider industry can access to better understand our sector, audiences and opportunities.

As a key funder of local content on screen, online and within the music sector, we are in a unique position to observe and reflect changes within the sectors we support as well as industry trends.

Our research includes: research to understand the audiences of Aotearoa and how they engage with content; research to understand the makeup of our screen and music industries; and research that is able to gauge gender, ethnicity, regional and genre representation, and diversity within those industry sectors.

Three of those reports have just been released and you can find links to these below: The Diversity Report, the Music Diversity Report and for the first time, the Seen On Screen Report. In addition, we are releasing an evaluation of funding of Māori content across NZ On Air, Te Māngai Pāho and the NZ Film Commission, researched and authored by NZ On Air Funding Advisor Heperi Mita.

Why now and what next?

The below reports provided useful data and analysis for the recent Ngā Aho Whakaari Industry hui Ki Tua – Navigating The Future. Ongoing, we hope these reports will also play a key role in future conversations about diversity, equity and inclusivity in the screen and music sectors.

For our part, NZ On Air is currently working towards the creation of a Diversity, Equity and Inclusivity framework to guide our investments, which we intend to have in place later this year.

We will continue to monitor and report on diversity, equity and inclusivity and invest in appropriate interventions to uplift creative communities that are under-represented.

Māori Content Review and Funding Analysis (2015-2020)

The review lays a quantitative foundation upon which public funding of the Māori screen sector can be analysed and observations made. With a better understanding of the Māori sector’s position within the public funding sphere, NZ On Air can implement more informed funding policies that strengthen outcomes for the Māori screen sector and audiences. We welcome your feedback on this report - email

Link to the Māori Content Review and Funding Analysis here.

Diversity Report 2022

The NZ On Air Diversity Report is an annual report on the gender and ethnic diversity among key creatives (Producers, Directors and Writers) of NZ On Air-funded screen projects, as well as the regional spread of production companies. It also, for the first time, includes data on age and disability within the sector.

Link to the Diversity Report 2022 here.

Music Diversity Report 2022

The NZ On Air Music Diversity Report monitors gender, ethnicity, genre and regional representation of the applicants and recipients of NZ On Air music funding.

Previously diversity within the music sector was reported as part of NZ On Air’s wider Diversity Report. This is the first standalone NZ On Air Music Diversity Report. Initially Music Diversity monitored gender balance only but, as of 2020, the report was expanded to monitor gender, ethnicity, genre and regional representation of the applicants and recipients of NZ On Air music funding.

Link to the Music Diversity Report 2022 here.

Seen on Screen 2022

Where the Diversity report monitors the diversity of key creatives involved behind the camera in creating content, the Seen On Screen report examines who we are seeing on screen in funded content.

This is the inaugural Seen On Screen research project and examines ethnic and gender representation and diversity across 95 Scripted productions (including Drama, Comedy and Children’s content) funded from July 2017 through to July 2021 – the first four years of the NZ Media Fund.

Link to Seen On Screen 2022 here.

Other NZ On Air Research 

We regularly commission or co-commission research from external research partners.

Where are the Audiences?

The most-often quoted of these research projects is Where Are The Audiences? (WATA) which we’ve been commissioning since 2014. This has become the go-to research for understanding how media consumption has changed and how the industry can best reach those audiences where they are.

WATA is produced by Glasshouse Consulting for NZ On Air and compares daily media use across a range of platforms, providing a single source of objective media information.

The last iteration of this research was a focused report on Youth audiences (15-24 yrs). It built on the key WATA questions, with a qualitative project conducted by TRA. Both pieces of research were launched together at the end of November 2022.

The next full WATA report will be produced mid-2023.

Creative Professionals

Creative New Zealand and NZ On Air jointly commissioned Kantar Public to conduct research into the sustainability of careers in the creative sector, and opportunities to better support creative professionals in their careers.

The need for the research stemmed from a new government focus on the long-term sustainability of the creative sector. The next research wave is completed and will be reported in the coming months.