A former UK Labour MP involved in a review of New Zealand Labour's failure in last year's election has argued the British election underlines the need for bravery in setting policy.
"I fear it's just a lack of intellectual self-confidence on the left. It's not unique to Britain, it's not unique to New Zealand, it's something that reflects I think the left across the democratic world," said Bryan Gould, who once made a bid for the UK Labour Party's leadership and is a former vice-chancellor of the University of Waikato.
Mr Gould is convening New Zealand Labour's three-part review after last year's election loss. He said any new thinking or policy was instantly labelled extreme and left-wing by opponents.
"For Labour in Britain and New Zealand, they must have the courage to do some new thinking. Your opponents are never going to pat you on the head.
"Everything that is novel or different, that breaks new ground and offers fresh hope for a better future, everything is going to be labelled as extreme or left wing. And we've got to get over that, and introduce some real thinking.
"There are large parts of the business community that is very keen to see some new economic thinking - we can see with the Auckland housing market and the dependence on the single commodity price...all these things are not the signs of a well-functioning economy."
The return of the Conservatives to power has set off a debate about UK Labour's policies and direction.
Those calling for change include former Prime Minister Tony Blair, who wants a move to capture more centrist voters, and David Miliband, who has criticised his brother Ed's campaign as ignoring the principles of aspiration and inclusion.
However, the drubbing Labour took in the United Kingdom elections holds few lessons for the party here, Labour leader Andrew Little says.
Mr Little told the Herald that he thought the circumstances in last week's election were specific to the UK.
"At a personal level I think the result was disappointing for UK Labour, it didn't totally surprise me because I didn't think we were getting the full picture [through the polls]."
Asked about Mr Blair's comments on needing to appeal to centrist voters, Mr Little said talk about left, right or the centre was irrelevant to most people.
"What they want to know is that the political parties putting themselves up to run the country have an idea about the issues...and have some solutions that are credible. And that's what we are focussed on."
Former New Zealand Labour president Mike Williams also believed the lessons for Labour here from the United Kingdom election were limited. However, he said there were some parallels.
"When instability is threatened you get a chunk of the electorate that votes for the status quo, and my suspicion is that's what happened.
"If the pre-election polls were correct you were looking at a Labour Government dependent on the Scottish Nationalists, which I think drove quite a few people who would have otherwise voted Labour to the Conservatives.
"[In New Zealand] you had Kim Dotcom and the possibility that that party would have some influence, and people went for the devil they knew."
Prime Minister John Key said he thought concern about the economy was largely behind the UK result.
"The Cameron government has been really the stand-out in Europe in terms of economic performance."
Mr Key said he also suspected voters were worried about the influence the Scottish National Party might have within a Labour-led Government, and whether that would lead to a break-up of the UK.
"That probably energised the Tory base, and I suspect there were some floating voters who were thinking about voting Ukip or Labour, that went and voted for the Tories because they wanted to see that position off the table."