University Of Otago Values

In 2019, the University started a staff values project called Shaping our culture, together – He waka kotuia.

The project was an opportunity for the staff of the University of Otago to choose their shared values for their working environment.

Through a staff and student survey and a series of workshops, staff worked together to define the values and elements of a positive work environment for themselves and their colleagues.

By November 2019, feedback from the surveys and workshops had been presented and a set of sessions were held to craft ideas on how the final staff values could be incorporated into University processes, such as recruitment and student experience.

Early in 2020, the agreed values and a behaviour framework were approved by the Vice-Chancellor’s Advisory Group.

The interruption of COVID-19 paused work on the next stage of the process, which has now restarted and is outlined below.

Next steps

  • Between August and October 2020, a series of design thinking workshops will turn the “values into actions”. A representative selection of staff will take the information, feedback and suggestions from the 2019 project work and define a set of planned actions for the University to collectively work on to ensure our values are embedded in our staff culture
  • In October 2020 the Vice-Chancellor and senior leaders will formally launch our values and reveal the actions to lead University staff on the next stage of our journey
  • In mid-2021, the staff engagement survey will be retaken, to measure our progress so far

The values

Download a copy of the ‘Our staff values’ logo (PDF)


We create, develop and maintain the University’s campuses in a way that inspires and supports excellence in all who experience them.


Our core values are:

  • Loyalty
  • Respect
  • Trust
  • Honesty
  • Excellence