Cultural » Strong & Tolerant

People are important. All members of our community are empowered to participate in decision-making and to contribute to society. We celebrate diversity and welcome newcomers, while recognising the special role of tangata whenua.

What is Strong & Tolerant?

Having a population rich in heritage, cultures and languages provides enormous social, cultural and economic benefits.  The arts are important for adding to community strength and identity, and are recognised for enabling communication across a range of different groups within society. Voting is a way that people can participate in decision-making, to be fairly represented and to seek redress for discrimination. 

Strong and tolerant community is made up of 12 indicators that were selected to measure progress towards the strong and tolerant community outcome definition (shown above). Data relating to each individual indicator (for the 2001 to 2017 period) is provided via the menu below. The index that measures change in the strong and tolerant community outcome (pictured below) shows the composite average of the individual indicators.

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Cultural well-being (and strong and tolerant community), 2001-2018

What this means

The strong and tolerant community outcome of the WR-GPI was highest in 2001, it has declined till 2012. The index has shown fluctuating results since. 


Major contributors to the negative trend in the outcome between 2001 and 2012 were declining average voter turnout at local elections, and enrolment in Māori language education (primary and secondary level).  


The overall decline in the strong and tolerant community outcome was partly offset by rising trends amongst the percentage of the population identifying with the Māori, Pacific or Asian ethnic groups and the number of registered heritage places in the region. Student enrolment in Māori language education has increased between 2012 & 2018.

Did you know?

Natural disasters (and the cost of cleaning up after them) actually create an increase in GDP, thus counting natural disasters as a benefit to our economy. From a GPI perspective, natural disasters would be a decline in our well-being

12 Indicators are being used to track Strong & Tolerant in the Wellington region

Click on each indicator below to access further information

Download Territorial Authority data for these Indicators

Perception of understanding of council decisions

Why is this indicator important?

Understanding of council processes plays an important part in the level of community involvement in decision-making. Having confidence in, and an understanding of, local authority decision making processes helps enable meaningful participation and effective input from residents.

Perception that the public understands council decision making, 2008-2018


  • In 2018, 41% of respondents in the Wellington region adult population thought they understood how their council makes decisions.
  • The percentage of the Wellington region that thought they understood how their council makes decisions has decreased slightly from 37% in 2008 to 41% in 2018.
  • In 2018 41%  of adults in the Wellington region thought they understood how their council makes decisions, compared to 32% of all the other New Zealand cities participating in the survey.

Perception of understanding of council decisions

Definition and data details

Indicator Definition

The percentage of respondents in the Wellington region that agreed or strongly agreed that overall, they understand how my council makes decisions.

Data Source

Quality of life survey

Last updated April 2019

Wellington region: Includes all territorial authority areas in the Wellington region (data points available only from 2008).

New Zealand cities surveyed: Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Wellington, Porirua and Hutt.

Indicators are updated in April each year; for those indicators where new data or survey results have become available.

While care has been taken in processing, analysing and extracting information, we cannot guarantee that the information is free from error and we shall not be liable for any loss suffered through the use, directly or indirectly, of any information, product or service.