The LisNZ project grew from concerns in the early to mid-1990s about the lack of information available to assist in facilitating positive settlement for migrants, and the need for a detailed assessment of the impact of immigration on New Zealand.
International immigration research has demonstrated that one of the most effective ways to obtain policy relevant and timely information on immigration and settlement is through longitudinal studies. Longitudinal studies are used to collect information from a sample of migrants on several occasions, thus capturing an understanding of the complete dynamics of the migration and settlement processes. Governments in Australia and Canada initiated such studies on immigration and settlement in the 1990s, and these surveys have been instrumental in the development of the LisNZ.
In 1997/98, the Department of Labour proposed that a comprehensive evidence base involving a longitudinal immigration survey was required if it was to robustly track migrant outcomes and develop informed immigration policy.
The primary objective of the Longitudinal Immigration Survey: New Zealand (LisNZ) is to provide comprehensive data about the settlement experiences of migrants in their first three years in New Zealand. Understanding the key factors contributing to positive social and economic outcomes for migrants will be used to inform the development of effective immigration policy and settlement services.