Inequality between New Zealand's European, and Maori and Pacific populations has worsened over the past decade, according to a new study.
The University of Victoria research built on a report released by the Ministry of Social Development in 2003.
Associate Professor of accounting and commercial law Dr Lisa Marriott and statistical consultant from the school of mathematics, statistics and operations research Dr Dalice Sim examined 21 social inequality indicators, including measures of health, knowledge and skills, employment, standards of living, cultural identity and social connectedness.
"Despite considerable attention paid to the issue of inequality, the data outlined in our research indicates that New Zealand's strategy to address inequality as it relates to Maori and Pacific people has not been successful," Dr Marriott said.
"We are seeing worsening outcomes for Maori and Pacific people, and even in cases where disparity is reducing, the gaps with the European population often remain large."
A majority of the largest increases in disparity were job or income related, including median weekly income, personal income distribution, unemployment, employment and proportion receiving an income-tested benefit, the study found.
Other increases were in cigarette smoking, obesity, suicide, proportion of the population with a Bachelor's degree or higher and internet access in the home as well.
Decreasing gaps were found in some areas, including life expectancy at birth, infant morality and early childhood education participation.
Education was improving for Maori people, with a greater number leaving school with a minimum of NCEA Level 2 or equivalent, but the gap between European and Pacific education was increasing.
The only measure where a gap no longer existed was in rates of tertiary education participation, Dr Marriott said.
"Although participation has increased for all ethnic groups, there has been such a large increase for Maori and Pacific people that participation rates are now similar," she said.
The only measure that suggested worsening outcomes for Europeans was housing affordability.
"This measure relates to the proportion of households of that ethnic group where housing costs are at least 30 per cent of disposable income," Dr Marriott said.
"Statistics show this worsening for European households and improving for Maori and Pacific households, although on the whole European households are still better off."
Household crowding, which was defined as a household where at least one more bedroom was required, had decreased for all ethnic groups.