NZDep2006 Index of Deprivation

Published online: 
02 August 2007

Department of Public Health, University of Otago, Wellington

Note: This is not a Ministry of Health publication but is provided here in the interests of making the information easier to find.


NZDep2006 is an updated version of the NZDep91, NZDep96, and NZDep2001 indexes of socioeconomic deprivation. NZDep2006 combines nine variables from the 2006 census which reflect eight dimensions of deprivation. NZDep2006 provides a deprivation score for each meshblock in New Zealand. Meshblocks are geographical units defined by Statistics New Zealand, containing a median of approximately 87 people in 2006.

The NZDep2006 index of deprivation has two forms – an ordinal scale and a continuous score.

  • The NZDep2006 index of deprivation ordinal scale ranges from 1 to 10, where 1 represents the areas with the least deprived scores and 10 the areas with the most deprived scores.
  • The NZDep2006 index of deprivation interval variable is the first principal component score, which has been scaled to have mean 1000 index points and standard deviation 100 index points. The NZDep2006 10 point scale is derived from this interval variable.

The NZDep2006 scale of deprivation from 1 to 10 divides New Zealand into tenths of the distribution of the first principal component scores. For example, a value of 10 indicates that the meshblock is in the most deprived 10 percent of areas in New Zealand, according the NZDep2006 scores.

Important points to note

  • NZDep2006 deprivation scores apply to areas rather than individual people.
  • The 1 to 10 scale is ordinal not interval.
  • First principal component scores may be used, if desired, instead of the 1 to 10 scale.

Publishing information

  • Date of publication:
    02 August 2007
    Ordering information:
    Only soft copy available to download