Mayoral Candidates

Our Mayoral Scoring Process:

We’ve combined all the resources available into simple scorecards; from the mayoral forum events, social media profiles, and the print media.

These include:

  • Mayoral Candidates Forums

  • Channel 9 News

  • The Otago Daily Times candidate profiles

  • Each Candidate's Social Media activity and Website

  • Additional Publically Available Resources such as Online Interview Responses for other Local Community Groups; e.g Greater South Dunedin, Sustainable Dunedin City, Spokes Dunedin, Disabled Person Assembly Dunedin, etc


Often in interviews, candidates will give tailored responses to please the values of the interviewer, often with little or no intention of valuing those priorities in their own work. By gaining insight from this wide variety of resources, each with their own range of values and priorities, we have avoided the chance of only being given answers we ‘wanted to hear’; instead we have gained an unbiased profile of each candidate's philosophy and intentions by combining their responses to each interviewing group.



To score full marks in each question a candidate answers must:

  1. Match our vision of a liveable, low carbon Dunedin where residents can all share a thoughtfully planned urban and natural environment.

  2. Include a high level of detail to show they understand the issues.

  3. Be committed to key projects, rather than use vague language.


Candidates also get marked down for:

  1. Lack of knowledge or depth in the answers

  2. Calling for unrealistic answers (too good to be true)

  3. Does not fully answer questions or tries to avoid the point of the question

  4. Goes off topic or gets distracted

  5. Regularly talking about areas outside of council control

  6. Talks repeatedly about very minor or local issues when asked about Dunedin wide priorities


We ranked each candidate on issues that we felt were important. The future mayor will be expected to display a strong leadership on these issues and candidates that scored highly provided a vision for Dunedin that we agree with.



Click candidate photo or name to view more information

Mayoral Candidates Summary

Candidates scores brief:

  • An “A” grade represents an issue where we strongly agree with what the candidate has said.

  • An “E” grade represents an issue where we strongly disagree with what the candidate has said.

We have made every attempt for objective and constructive processes with handing out our grades.


Value 1: Economic Future Vision of “Progress”

We have looked into and tried to understand each candidate’s economic vision for Dunedin. Candidates who score highly have explained business ideas in more detail than the umbrella term ‘technology’. We expected them to display an understanding of new business ideas that work towards growing 21st century business in Dunedin. Candidates will be marked down for showing a reliance on tourism and the more traditional business models of the 20th century. Compartmentalizing “IT” or “technology” as one single thing. Their mark will also be affected if they “follow the crowd” and don’t actually display an understanding of areas where Dunedin can succeed in a new and transforming business environment.


Value 2: Transport
We have looked into and tried to understand each candidate’s vision for the future of Dunedin’s transportation. Candidates who we have scored highly have demonstrated a comprehensive understanding of the immediate concerns for the public transportation network and also the current lack of viable options beyond private car ownership. They will also need to provide clear plans for a better cycleway network and acknowledge the necessity for and electrification of motorised transport to meet Dunedin’s goal of carbon neutrality. Candidates who have scored poorly will not have demonstrated an understanding or a desire for any of the previous options. Or they have been vague on their ideas about what will be viable this city.


Value 3: Climate Leadership

We have looked into and tried to understand each candidate’s position on restricting Greenhouse Gas emissions. Candidates who have scored highly will have considered the potential problem of climate change on a varying issues surrounding Dunedin. With examples such as transportation and South Dunedin’s infrastructure problems. They will also have had to provide sensible options for Dunedin to take with respect to mitigating these potential issues. Candidates who have scored poorly will have failed to mention climate change with respect to its relevant issues, or they have outright questioned its relevance to Dunedin.


Value 4: South Dunedin, Flooding and Sea Level

We have looked into and tried to comprehend each candidate’s understanding as well as solutions to the immediate and long term issues facing South Dunedin. Candidates who have scored highly will have referred to both the immediate infrastructure issues and placed it in context with longer term solutions for rising groundwater and an increase in extreme weather events. Candidates who have scored poorly will have failed to encapsulate the entire problem at hand. Pointing to solely infrastructure, solely climate change or nothing as to the reason for the South Dunedin flooding.


Value 5: Political Competence

Last, but not least, we have given each candidate a letter grade based upon their ‘political ability’. Candidates will score highly for their speaking ability, coherence, staying to the topic at hand, understanding the issues being discussed and their general relatability. Candidates will be marked down for a lack of knowledge or depth in the answers, giving vague answers, not fully answering questions and trying to avoid the point of the question, going off topic and getting distracted or if they regularly talking about areas outside of council control. 

Note: this is graded independently from our previous criteria. We hope this grade will reflect the candidates ability to communicate with other councillors and the public regardless of their views on our 4 key values.

Further examples of our criteria are as follows;

  • Engagement with Stakeholder and Residents Groups

  • Trustworthiness

  • Past Baggage

  • Public Profile

  • Clarity of Judgement

  • Champion for 21st Century cities & Generation Zero values

  • New Perspective, Visionary thinking

  • Cross-Generational Communication Skills and Understanding

  • Willingness to Engage with and Learn from Dunedin’s Young (18-35) Citizens


For inquiries please contact: