Our Case studies

A case study is a powerful tool for explaining shifts and improvements in the delivery of complex services, programmes or policies. It is a valuable research approach for showing real and lasting change in an easy-to-read format.

With 15+ years of research and evaluation experience we are skilled in preparing potent case studies, specifically:

  • identifying and highlighting successes and learnings

  • sharing proof points, change and outcomes

  • showing the value of a programme

  • supporting both new and continuing programmes to tell their stories.

We use a complexity-informed approach to case study preparation. This means we see things that others may miss that are important. We capture key insights. We develop an engaging narrative. Our case studies are clear, concise and well-structured. They quickly explain how the focus of the case has positively impacted individuals and communities.

Clients tell us our case studies are valuable for programme stakeholders such as funders, providers, service recipients and the wider communities. 

Here is a selection of published case studies completed by Pragmatica.

Talanoa Ako (PowerUP)

Talanoa Ako (previously known as Pacific PowerUP) is an education programme for Pacific parents. Since 2013, it has helped Pacific parents and communities build their educational knowledge to support their children’s learning. The PowerUP model of engagement is strengths-based. It encourages parents, families and communities to take ownership of the programme.

Case studies contribute to the evidence-based discussion of Pacific education by the Pacific community and education researchers, policymakers and programmers, teachers, and schools.

From 2016 to 2019, PowerUP families shared their stories through the Guided Talanoa Series. 

The case studies (2016-2019) can be found here.

Thriving Southland

Farming faces a time of major change in the external expectations about how land managers run their businesses. In response, farmers want to understand better and respond to the environmental challenges they are experiencing on their farms. Despite regulatory uncertainty, many are keen to access and interpret new, relevant science.

Thriving Southland is a community-led, cross-sectoral group of farmers established in December 2020 with a vision to create a prosperous Southland, healthy people, healthy environment from the mountains to the sea. 

In 2022 Pragmatica prepared a case study on the work of Thriving Southland, built out of an evaluation of the programme completed that year. The difference that makes a difference: How Thriving Southland supports good farming practice through Catchment Groups can be found here.

A summary infographic of the 2022 case study can be found here.

In 2023, Pragmatica reviewed the progress of the programme. The latest 2023 case study, Inspiring community action: Thriving Southland provides extension to farmers and the Southland community, shows how some farmers are becoming better equipped to address the challenges they are facing. By understanding the science that is specific to their catchment area they can make innovative farming decisions.  

The latest 2023 case study can be found here.

A summary infographic of the 2023 case study can be found here.

Creatives in Schools

The Creatives in Schools programme funds professional artists and creative practitioners to partner with schools and kura to share specialist artistic knowledge and creative practice with ākonga and students. 

The Creatives in Schools programme is delivered by Te Tāhuhu o te Mātauranga | Ministry of Education in partnership with Te Manatū Taonga | Ministry for Culture and Heritage and Creative New Zealand. 

The Creatives in Schools learning experiences enhance students’ wellbeing; improves their core competencies in communication, collaboration, and creative thinking; and inspires their awareness of careers in the arts and creative sectors. 

Pragmatica has evaluated the programme in 2020 and 2021, finding that Creatives in Schools is delivering important benefits to students, schools, creatives and communities, in fact beyond what could have been expected at this stage.  

Two case studies were prepared to illustrate the benefits of the Creatives in Schools programme, showcasing Pacific performing arts and student led-choregraphy.

Click here to access the case studies.

Talanoa Ako response to COVID-19 case study

Maintaining learning momentum within Pacific communities during COVID-19 lockdown

On 25 March 2020, Aotearoa New Zealand, went into COVID-19 lockdown. At Alert Level 4, people had to stay home, no gatherings were allowed, and all public places were closed. The lockdown came quickly and was hard for some Pacific families.

Realising that community partners could not deliver the Talanoa Ako programme face-to-face as they had normally, the Parent Information and Community Intelligence (PICI) Strategy and Integration team, at the Ministry of Education quickly considered alternative delivery options. The case studies, and accompanying infographics, highlight how the PICI team met Pacific parents and families needs and supported their children’s education at home.

The case studies, and accompanying infographics, can be found here:

Leadership Practices Supporting Pasifika Student Success

Leadership Practices Supporting Pasifika Student Success is an important research project containing three case studies and exemplars from three secondary schools with high numbers of Pacific students. These schools are McAuley High School, De La Salle College and Otahuhu College. They show effective school leadership in mainstream secondary schools to support Pacific student achievement and success. Judy Oakden, Kellie Spee, Dr Ruth Toumu’a, Pale Sauni and Clark Tuagalu undertook this project.

The links to each of the case studies and exemplars from the Ministry of Education Te Kete Ipurangi (TKI) portal can be found here:

McCauley High School Case Study (PDF, 1 MB)
De La Salle College Case Study (PDF, 1 MB)
Otahuhu College Case Study (PDF, 1 MB)

Rangiātea: case studies and exemplars / Māori education success

Rangiātea is a major research project that draws together a rich array of examples from five high-performing, mainstream secondary schools. The research and case exemplars explain practical ways to raise Māori student achievement. They show how to build effective relationships with whānau. They also explain how to set up sound positive leadership in secondary schools in Aotearoa New Zealand. Judy Oakden, Nan Wehipeihana, Kellie Spee and Kataraina Pipi, undertook this project.

Here is the Ministry of Education portal to Rangiātea – to access the five case studies and exemplars: