Philippa Howden-Chapman


Philippa Lynne Howden-Chapman CNZM QSO is a professor of public health at the University of Otago, Wellington, and the director of the New Zealand Centre for Sustainable Cities.[5][6]

Philippa Howden-Chapman

Philippa Howden-Chapman CNZM (cropped).jpg
Howden-Chapman in 2021
Auckland, New Zealand
Alma materUniversity of Auckland
Known forResearch into housing insulation and heating in New Zealand
Spouse(s)Ralph Chapman
AwardsPublic Health Champion 2006[1]
Joan Metge medal[2]
Liley medal[3]
Prime Minister's Science Prize[4]
Scientific career
FieldsPublic health, housing, social housing, health inequality, fuel poverty
InstitutionsUniversity of Otago, Wellington
WebsiteStaff page
Alternative staff page
Google Scholar page


Howden-Chapman started her career in secondary-school teaching, before moving to clinical psychology, and then public health.

She has conducted a number of high-profile randomised control trials into various aspects of housing and health, in the process helping to build the evidence base for the later New Zealand-wide insulation programme. Howden-Chapman's Healthy Housing group conducted an analysis of the Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart programme which showed that overall it "will have a net benefit of $951 million dollars, and a highly favourable benefit cost ratio of 3.9:1."[7]

Howden-Chapman was a member of the 2012 Expert Advisory Group on Solutions to Child Poverty, which outlined a number of policy recommendations to tackle child poverty in New Zealand.[8]

In December 2014, Howden-Chapman and her research programme were awarded the $500,000 Prime Minister's Science Prize. She was the first woman and the first social scientist to win the prize.[4][9]

Howden-Chapman is the chair of the WHO Housing and Health Guideline Development Group.[6] She is also director of He Kāinga Orana, the Housing and Health Research Programme examining the link between housing quality and health, based in the University of Otago, New Zealand.[10] With a strong interest in reducing inequalities in the determinants of health, Howden-Chapman's research aims to identify and evaluate housing-related interventions to improve individual, family and community health.[10] Her research has had a major influence on housing, health and energy policy in New Zealand.[6]


In the 2009 New Year Honours, Howden-Chapman was appointed a Companion of the Queen's Service Order, for services to public health.[11]

In November 2013, Howden-Chapman was made a fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand.[12][13]

In 2017, Howden was selected as one of the Royal Society Te Apārangi's "150 women in 150 words", celebrating the contributions of women to knowledge in New Zealand.[14]

Howden-Chapman was named the Supreme Winner of NEXT Woman of the Year 2018 for her advocacy for healthy, warm and dry homes in New Zealand.[15]

In October 2019, Howden-Chapman was appointed one of seven inaugural sesquicentennial distinguished chairs, or poutoko taiea, at Otago University.[16]

In the 2021 New Year Honours, Howden-Chapman was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to public health.[17] She was awarded the 2021 Rutherford Medal for her healthy housing research.[18]

Selected publicationsEdit

  • Howden-Chapman, P. & Penelope Carroll (eds.) (2004). Housing and Health. Steele Roberts. ISBN 1-877338-17-6
  • Howden-Chapman, P., Stuart, K. & Chapman, R. (eds.) (2010). Sizing up the City: Urban Form and Transport in New Zealand. Steele Roberts. ISBN 9781877448904
  • Bierre, S., Philippa Howden-Chapman & Lisa Early (eds.) (2013). Homes People Can Afford: How to Improve Housing in New Zealand. Steele Roberts. ISBN 978-1-927242-25-4
  • Howden-Chapman, P. (2015). Home truths: Confronting New Zealand's housing crisis. Wellington, New Zealand: Bridget Williams Books, 116p. doi: 10.7810/9780947492335
  • Howden-Chapman, P. & Chapman, R. Risk, uncertainty and post-normal science: towards better policy. New Zealand Science Review, 1998, 55, 1-2, 11-19.


  1. ^ "Public Health Champion 2006 – Philippa Howden-Chapman". Public Health Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 31 August 2013.
  2. ^ "Dame Joan Metge Medal". The Royal Society of New Zealand. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  3. ^ "The Liley Medal". Health Research Council of New Zealand. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  4. ^ a b Morton, Jamie (2 December 2014). "Prestigious science prize awarded to housing champion". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 7 December 2014.
  5. ^ "Philippa Howden-Chapman". New Zealand Centre for Sustainable Cities. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  6. ^ a b c "Professor Philippa Howden-Chapman, Department of Public Health". University of Otago. Retrieved 21 July 2013.
  7. ^ "Evaluation of Warm Up New Zealand: Heat Smart". Healthy Housing / He Kainga Oranga. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  8. ^ "Solutions to Child Poverty". Office of the Children's Commission. Archived from the original on 22 May 2013. Retrieved 13 October 2013.
  9. ^ Chapman, Wallace (7 December 2014). "Social scientist wins PM's Science Prize". Radio New Zealand National. Retrieved 8 December 2014.
  10. ^ a b "Professor Philippa Howden-Chapman – Healthy Housing – He Kāinga Oranga". Retrieved 9 October 2018.
  11. ^ "New Year honours list 2009". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 31 December 2008. Retrieved 31 December 2020.
  12. ^ "Leading Otago researchers elected as Royal Society Fellows". Otago University Bulletin Board. 21 November 2013. Retrieved 18 November 2014.
  13. ^ Royal Society of New Zealand (20 November 2013). "Top researchers, scholars elected Fellows of Royal Society". (Press release). Retrieved 18 November 2014.
  14. ^ "Philippa Howden-Chapman". Royal Society Te Apārangi. Retrieved 10 May 2021.
  15. ^ "NEXT Woman Of The Year 2018 Revealed". Now To Love. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
  16. ^ Gibb, John (1 October 2019). "University's prestigious poutoko taiea initiative recognises leading scholars". Otago Daily Times Online News. Retrieved 8 October 2019.
  17. ^ "New Year honours list 2021". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. 31 December 2020. Retrieved 31 December 2020.
  18. ^ "Influential healthy homes research recognised with top honour". NZ Herald. 18 November 2021. Retrieved 17 November 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)