Matthew website

Dr Matthew Birchall

Senior Fellow

Matthew is a Senior Fellow at The New Zealand Initiative, focusing on infrastructure and transport policy.

A historian by training, Matthew's writing on the British Empire has been published in the Journal of Global History and Global Intellectual History. He was awarded the Royal Historical Society's prestigious Alexander Prize in 2021 for the best scholarly article based upon original historical research.

Matthew holds an MA (Hons) in International Relations & Modern History from the University of St Andrews, an M.Phil. in Political Thought & Intellectual History from the University of Cambridge and a PhD in history, also from the University of Cambridge.

Phone: 04 499 0790


Recent Work

2024 07 10 Driving Change website

Podcast: Driving Change: How road pricing can improve our roads

In this episode, Matthew discusses his new report with Oliver which is about road pricing in New Zealand. They explore the history of road pricing, international examples, and potential benefits such as reducing congestion and improving infrastructure planning. Read more

Dr Oliver Hartwich
Dr Matthew Birchall
10 July, 2024
LT website thumbnail

Media release: The New Zealand Initiative Releases Major Report On Transport Funding Reform

Wellington (Tuesday, 9 July 2024) - The New Zealand Initiative’s report proposes a comprehensive reform of the country's transport funding model. The report, Driving Change: How Road Pricing Can Improve Our Roads, authored by Senior Fellow Dr Matthew Birchall, argues that the current fuel tax based system is outdated and unfair. Read more

Dr Matthew Birchall
9 July, 2024
2024 05 09 AG report submission

Submission: The Auditor-General's Report, Making Infrastructure Investment Decisions Quickly

1.1 This submission, in response to the Controller and Auditor-General’s report Making Infrastructure Investment Decisions Quickly (2023), is made by The New Zealand Initiative (the Initiative). The Initiative is a Wellington-based think tank supported primarily by major New Zealand businesses. Read more

Dr Matthew Birchall
8 May, 2024

Bridge to the Future

The cancellation of KiwiRail’s $3 billion upgrade of the decrepit fleet of Cook Strait ferries provides an opportunity to finally build what New Zealand really needs: the Cook Strait Bridge. This 27-kilometre monument to Kiwi ingenuity would show the world that we’re serious about infrastructure – and provide a handy escape hatch for those fleeing Wellington. Read more

Dr Matthew Birchall
Insights Newsletter
3 April, 2024

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