Karen Vaughan


KV glade (2)

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Education

Postgraduate Diploma in Business

Accredited Mediator

Accredited Family Dispute Resolution Provider

Cert. Te Reo Māori me ngā Tikanga

25+ years in vocational learning research, senior leadership, governance and facilitation has taught me a great deal about the way that contexts shape relationships and perspectives.

My former roles include: Director on the Board of the Open Polytechnic; Head of Stakeholder Relations at the Royal New Zealand College of GPs; and Chief Researcher at the New Zealand Council for Educational Research, where I led 30+ research projects and chaired its Ethics Committee.

My research publications include 50+ good practice guides, academic articles and book chapters, reports and blogposts on vocational education systems, apprenticeships, the future of work and career pathways. These have influenced numerous high-profile government initiatives including: Women in Trades; Vocational Pathways; Engineering e2e (education to employment); Review of the NCEA; Career Information Advice & Guidance; and Industry Training.

I've been invited into numerous advisory roles with New Zealand government agencies and professional associations, and international bodies such as the European Training Foundation, OECD, and International Centre for Career Development and Public Policy.

Currently I serve on the Board of Work-Integrated Learning New Zealand and the Competence Authority of the Teaching Council. I'm a consultant to Te Ngāpara (Centre for Restorative Practice) at Victoria University of Wellington and a Community Advisor to the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG).

I'm also a mediator and restorative practice facilitator. I help organisations, teams, boards and individuals to resolve disputes and engage productively with conflict. 

Andrew Kear


AK profile

I have been privileged to be deeply involved in many major developments in education management, industrial relations, and occupational safety and health.

I was the Post-Primary Teachers' Association's Lead Advocate for more than ten years, and served on advisory groups across the education sector. As Manager of Schools’ Monitoring at the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, I led the agency's relationship-management with schools and communities during implementation of the NCEA.

In a decade as GM at the Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO), I developed its workplace-based assessment system, since emulated by other industry organisations. I also established a community of practice of more than 200 assessors and moderators, and led national capability-building workshops. I am the co-author of the suite of resources used by more than 30,000 building and construction apprentices for the New Zealand Certificate in Carpentry.

As National Operations Manager at the former Department of Labour, I established new systems for embedding certification in the Health and Safety inspectorate. I served on numerous advisory panels for ministries and ministers of the crown, including the Ministry for Business, Innovation and Employment.

My work has focused on developing systems that support individuals to learn better and be more productive, and to have their achievements and skills recognised. Too many bureaucratic processes actually create hurdles that get in the way of these simple goals. A background in industrial relations dispute resolution has given me an unshakeable belief that solutions can be found and the needs of individuals and groups can be met.

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