Social » Sense of Place

We have a deep sense of pride in the Wellington region and there is strong community spirit. We value the region’s unique characteristics – its rural, urban and harbour landscapes, its central location, and its capital city.

What is Sense of Place?

Residents with a strong sense of pride and a sense of community are key to building strong, socially sustainable and connected communities. These people will act as advocates for their region and promote the positive aspects their region has to offer by contributing to improving their neighbourhoods. The built environment contributes to the way people feel about where they live and impacts strongly on the sustainability of the natural environment. 

Sense of place is made up of 6 indicators that were selected to measure progress towards the sense of place 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 for sense of place (pictured below) shows the composite average of the individual indicators.

Walking to School

Sense of place, 2001-2018

What this means

The sense of place GPI has changed a small amount from 2001 to 2015, then decreased by 1.5 percentage points in the last three years (2015 to 2018). The sense of place indicator has fluctuated mildly over the 18 year study time .The strongest negative trend across the sense of place indicators was in people’s perceptions about graffiti, vandalism and litter being a problem in their local area.

Did you know?

Using GDP, smoking has traditionally been counted as a benefit to the economy. With a GPI, smoking is regarded as a cost

6 Indicators are being used to track Sense of Place in the Wellington region

Click on each indicator below to access further information

Download Territorial Authority data for these Indicators

Sense of community

Why is this indicator important?

Local community members and neighbours are a key source of social support (especially in emergencies) and give people a sense of belonging. Contact with others in the local neighbourhood can help maintain social connectedness and trust between households and foster a sense of community.

Percentage of resident’s agreeing or strongly agreeing that they feel a sense of community with others in their local neighbourhood, 2008 - 2018



  • In 2018, 57% of Wellington region respondents agreed or strongly agreed that they felt a sense of community in the neighbourhood. This is just slightly higher than for New Zealand respondents overall at 52%.
  • Respondents’ sense of community in the Wellington region has decreased from 66% in 2008 to 57% in 2018 .

Sense of community

Definition and data details

Indicator Definition

The percentage of respondents in the Wellington region that agreed or strongly agreed that they felt a sense of community with others in their local neighbourhood.

Data Source

Quality of life survey

Last updated April 2019

Wellington region data points available from 2008.

Comparable NZ cities data only collected from 2012.  Indicators are updated in April and November each year; for those indicators where new data or survey results have become available.

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

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.