Dr Kate Nicholls

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Senior Lecturer; Programme Leader Social Science

Phone: +64 9 921 9999

Email: knicholl@aut.ac.nz

Physical Address:
Room 1408, Level 14
AUT Tower (WT Building)
Corner Rutland and Wakefield Streets
Auckland City.
Postal Address:
Department of Social Sciences
Faculty of Culture and Society
AUT University
Private Bag 92006
Auckland 1142.


  • PhD in Political Science, University of Notre Dame (Indiana)
  • Master of Arts in Political Studies, University of Auckland
  • Bachelor of Arts in Political Studies and History, University of Auckland.

Memberships and Affiliations:

  • Australian Political Science Association.
  • New Zealand Political Studies Association.

Teaching Areas:

  • New Zealand and comparative politics, political economy and policy studies, democratic theory.
  • Papers regularly taught: Social Thinking, New Zealand Politics and Policy Making, Democratic Participation and Social Action.

Research Areas:

  • Comparative political economy
  • Quality of democracy
  • Corporatism and labour relations
  • Interest groups and business in politics
  • The impact of European integration on peripheral EU member states
  • Australian and New Zealand politics
  • The economic and social developmental strategies of small countries.

Research Summary:

Kate's researchinterests are in comparative politics, especially comparative political economy,the role of interest groups in politics, the quality of democracy, and the relationshipbetween these themes.  Her researchtends to driven by general questions rather than specific case studies orarea-study research, but she has written and continues to write aboutAustralia, New Zealand, Ireland, and Southern Europe.  Kate is interested in supervising studentresearch in the areas of comparative political economy, public policy, andpolitics in general.   

Current Research Projects:

  • Farming interests in Ireland and New Zealand.
  • Conceptualising and comparing systems of interest group mediation in liberal market economies. 
  • The relationship between capitalist organization and electoral systems in New Zealand and Australia.


  • “Economic outcomes in New Zealand: a varieties of capitalism lens”, Australian Journal of Political Science 52, 2 (2018).
  • Mediating Policy: Greece, Ireland, and Portugal Before the Eurozone Crisis.  Routledge, 2015.
  • "Second Tier Labour Market Support Structures: Greece, Ireland, and Portugal", Political Science Quarterly 28 1 (2013).
  • "Parliamentary Government" in International Encyclopedia of Political Science. (CQ Press/American Political Science Association 2010).
  • "The Europeanization of Irish Public Policy: Theoretical and Comparative Perspectives", in Paul Donnelly, John Hogan, and Brendan O’Rourke (eds.), Business and Politics in Ireland (Dublin: Oak Tree Press, 2010).
  • "Why Social Partnership Matters: Irish Policies for Work-Life Balance", West European Politics 29, N.3 (May 2006).
  • "Where Dragons Falter: Labor Politics and the Democratisation of Civil Society in South Korea and Taiwan", in Yochiro Sato (ed.), Growth and Governance in Asia (Honolulu: Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, 2004): 59-86.  With Paul G. Buchanan.
  • Labour Politics in Small Open Democracies: Australia, Chile, Ireland, New Zealand and Uruguay (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003). With Paul G. Buchanan.
  • "Labour Politics and Democratisation in South Korea and Taiwan", Government and Opposition 38, N.2, (Spring 2003). With Paul Buchanan.
  • "Why was there no General Strike in 1991? Corporatism, Pluralism, and Neoliberal Labour Relations in New Zealand", Commonwealth and Comparative Politics 40, N.1 (March 2002).
  • "Ideological Aspects of Hegemonic Projects: Latin American Civil Society and Cultural Values in Comparative Perspective", JILAS — Journal of Iberian and Latin American Studies 5, N.2 (December 1999).


  • European Union Studies Association (United States) Haas Fund Award.
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