The New Zealand Political Studies Association was formed in Christchurch in September 1974. The first conference of the Association was held in Wellington in May 1976. It then met in Auckland in August 1977, and held its third conference in Christchurch in May 1980. Since then it has developed into an annual conference that is held on a rotational basis at the different universities in New Zealand. In 2011, the inaugural Postgraduate Pre-Conference Workshop was held and it has now turned into an annual event.
For a number of years the NZPSA was an affiliate of the Australasian Political Studies Association (APSA). This affiliation gave the NZPSA the right to elect a member to the APSA excecutive and led to the joint holding of the NZPSA and APSA Conferences at the University of Canterbury in 1999 and at the University of Otago in 2005. When the APSA AGM voted in 2007 to transform itself into the Australian Political Studies Association this affiliation came to a end, although links with APSA have been maintained and are currently being strengthened. We continue to provide members’ rates at each others’ conferences and reciprocal awards, and we are working towards once again holding joint conferences.
The NZPSA also has strong links with the UK PSA and the Candian PSA. Check out the International PSA Benefits & Awards page for further details on the various awards and benefits available to members.
The Association awards an annual prize for the best postgraduate conference paper on New Zealand politics, the best postgraduate conference in any other field of politcal studies and the best undergraduate paper in a course on New Zealand domestic politics. See the NZPSA Prizes page for further details.