Research Team

Research Team

Dr Annie Weir

Dr Weir is passionate about producing credible research and evaluation that informs organisational policies and practices in the education, health and social service sectors. She is particularly interested in how agencies and organisations interpret and implement government policies. Her research and evaluation projects have involved investigations into marginalised and vulnerable groups in New Zealand for example, early childhood intervention programmes, youth, justice, refugees, and older adults including those living with dementia. Her work includes facilitating “Dancing with Data’ programme aimed at building organisational capacity in the social services sector to conduct and/or utilise evidence from research and evaluation to inform decision making and practice. A focus of her current work also includes helping organisations to implement client-outcomes focused evaluation including Results Based Accountability (RBA). Her recent experience includes working with Māori and Pasifika on numerous social services, health and education projects.

Dr Weir holds a PhD in Education from Victoria University of Wellington. She is currently an Honorary Research Fellow with the School of Critical Studies in Education, Faculty of Education, University of Auckland. She has held senior education and quality management roles in tertiary education and the non- government sector. She has been involved in research and evaluation in higher education, healthcare management and social services for many years in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. In November 2011 she returned from Scotland where she had held the post of Research Fellow, Centre for Educational Sociology, and was Healthcare Management Research Fellow with the Business School, University of Edinburgh. Dr Weir has collaborated on a number of projects related to the interface between health and higher education. She has also worked on a large European project focused on knowledge in relation to education and health policy

Her recent research and evaluation has included:

  • Organisation reviews
  • Programme evaluations
  • Social impact evaluations
  • Implementing and supporting Results Based Accountability
  • Designing outcomes frameworks and measures
  • Research initiatives and evaluation of programmes that support pepe, tamariki, rangatahi and whānau health and well-being
  • Research and evaluation of community responses to people living with dementia
  • Research and evaluation in family violence
  • Research and evaluation in social housing
  • Evaluation of social work initiatives
  • Evaluation of mental health initiatives
  • Facilitating roundtable reporting for philanthropic trusts
  • Conducting Dancing with Data workshops aimed at building organisational capacity of non-government organisations to conduct their own research and evaluation

She has authored numerous research and evaluation reports, and articles, and has presented at international conferences in Europe, USA, Australia and New Zealand.

Click here to read the list of publications Annie has written.

Professional Committees/Groups:
  • 2013/19 Australasian Evaluation Society
  • 2013/19 Aotearoa New Zealand Evaluation Society
  • 2013/19 Women's Studies Association Organising Committee
  • 2017/19 International Society Third Sector Research

Dr Jane Holmes
Research Coordinator

Dr Holmes completed her PhD in Psychology at the University of Auckland. She has worked in both the tertiary education and community-based sectors. Her research interests are predominantly in the broad area of aging including such factors as perceived control, social representations, cognitive appraisal and the psychosocial influences of ageism, health beliefs and decision making for treatment options and the social and psychological impact of neurogenerative diseases.

Click here to view Jane's C.V.

Meet The Research Associates
Dr Jane Furness
Research Associate
Dr Jane Furness has been involved in the field of adult education for over twenty years. She is a community psychologist who is passionate about education and community enhancement. Her engagement with adult literacy and a concern for family and community wellbeing led to her doctoral study which she recently completed. Her masters’ research was an evaluation of a men’s non-violence programme from the perspective of their partners. Dr Furness has conducted, managed or been an advisor to a range of development and research projects, including adult literacy projects undertaken or contracted by Skill New Zealand, the Tertiary Education Commission and the Ministry of Education between 2000 and 2005. She has taught at the University of Waikato in the post-graduate community psychology programme, of which she is an associate. Most recently she has taught in the Faculty of Education in family and community literacy and in working with cultural and linguistic diversity. She has given many presentations on family literacy education and its links to wellbeing for individuals, families and communities.

Click here to read Jane's CV.

Dr Graeme Vaughan
Research Associate

Dr Graeme Vaughan has been designing, analysing and using statistical information in the areas of health and social wellbeing for more than 25 years, primarily in government departments, including the Ministry of Health, various Australian state government departments, the Australian Bureau of Statistics and the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. His primary focus is on putting meaning into, and extracting meaning from, statistical information so that it can be applied practically. He also has a particular interest in the effective presentation of quantitative information. He has designed evaluation frameworks, designed collection instruments and classifications, assessed indicators as fit for purpose, developed indicators and measures, analysed and reported on statistical information and managed the production of statistical publications. He has held a number of middle management and team leadership positions, developing and applying skills in business planning, project management and change management, and lectured and tutored at Australian universities. His dissertation was in the field of political sociology and psychology.

Click here to read Dr Vaughan's CV.

Dr Margaret McLean
Research Associate
Dr McLean is a part time Senior Lecturer who conducts research and teaches in Disability Studies based in the School of Critical Studies in Education, Faculty of Education, University of Auckland. She begun her career as a primary school teacher where she became aware of the diverse learning needs of a range of children in poor urban schools. Moving later into ‘special education’ she worked with infants, children and young people with intellectual, emotional and physical impairments their families and teachers. It became increasingly apparent to her that social isolation and rejection was a more intractable problem than difficulties with learning. A developing awareness of some of the difficulties in practice led her to investigate in the first place, the distance, in spite of the rhetoric of partnership, between schools for disabled children and the parents and families of those children. The second issue was the gap between in-service education for special educators and the application of learning in schools. The third was the effect on interactions with disabled people of staff views about impairment and disability. The fourth was the recognition that the ableist beliefs of the community were neither examined nor regarded as significant in the research literature.

Click here to read Margaret's CV.

Dr Eric Messick
Research Associate
Dr Eric Messick has been working in the areas of psychology, behaviour, and education for over 17 years. He is a Board Certified Behaviour Analyst (BCBA-D) and a Registered Psychologist. He has worked as a lecturer, teaching fellow, clinical leader, supervisor, senior psychologist, consultant, programme director and in other roles. Dr Messick specialises in behaviour analysis and is currently in private practice where he provides professional supervision, training, and consultation. He has delivered many presentations at local and international conferences and has a broad range of experience from working with a variety of people with various struggles in New Zealand and overseas. He is experienced and interested in autism, challenging behaviour, conduct disorder, antisocial behaviour, mental health, evidence-based practice, single-case design, education, professional training/supervision, implementation, service development and evaluation, and more.

Click here to read Eric's CV.

Dr. Wayne Duncan
Research Associate

Dr. Wayne Duncan has been a primary and secondary school teacher, primary school Principal and secondary school Deputy Principal, an Itinerant Behavioural Advisor, and a finalist in the National Educational Teaching Awards (NEiTA). He has also undertaken a number of other roles from an Officer in the New Zealand Defence Force, Innovations Projects Manager for a regional development agency and Evaluation Lead for a regional sports trust.

He became interested in behaviour management specifically the importance of the social relational nature of learning and teaching. This prompted Wayne to pursue a Master’s in Educational Psychology and then a Doctor of Education focused on the nature and function of empathy in online learning environments.

Recently he has continued to focus on his interest in research, especially iterative dialogical research methodologies. Wayne enjoys exploring innovative ways to explore understandings with an innovative qualitative research methodology developed within his doctorate being published in the International Journal of Educational Research and Method and a chapter in a book “The Psychology of Empathy” . Using this methodology and related skills, he has undertaken a range of research projects in Health, Education and the Business sector. He is currently working in a research consultancy capacity and co-authoring a book focused on empathy and mindfulness.

Click here to read Dr Duncan's CV.

Our People
At Impact Research NZ we believe that our people are our most valuable assets. With researchers and Research Associates who are leaders in their fields, our combined experience and expertise encompasses a broad range of social sector interests.
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Our Research and Evaluation
Research and evaluation are now seen as essential elements in the provision of the social services, and provide the means of measuring outcomes for clients, and informing service improvement.

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Contact Us
Impact Research NZ
PO Box 9591 Newmarket
Auckland 1149
Phone: +64 027 612 4335
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