21 July 2020 at 9:00 am
Meet the team: John Goulter
John is our General Manager – Stakeholders and Communications. A former political journalist, he acts as a key conduit between ENZ, the Government, and the New Zealand public.
Could you please outline your own role and the role of the Stakeholders and Communications team?
The Stakeholders and Communications team looks after the part of ENZ’s work that intersects with key external groups – such as other government departments, Ministers, Parliament and, through our various channels, the people of New Zealand.
We try to get all those influences lined up in support of international education. Right now, thanks to COVID-19, there is more external focus on international education than there has been for years. We try to ensure it’s well-informed.
How has COVID-19 impacted your team’s work, and what work do you have ahead of you with the recovery?
Sometimes it seems like we have done nothing else since COVID-19 appeared on the horizon way back in January.
It has brought to the surface some long-running issues about international education. It’s an opportunity for us to show leadership in outlining the future role of the sector, and developing interesting new approaches.
Can you tell me a bit about your professional background?
I was a journalist for a long time, mainly reporting politics from the Press Gallery in Parliament.
I loved that at the time but I moved into public affairs roles because after a while in journalism I wanted to be influencing the way things happen, rather than just writing about them.
Journalism is now changing totally, like many sectors are. Some new models are emerging, but it’s a struggle in a country the size of New Zealand.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I like running and travelling and live music. So I’m not having a great year. Most running events have been cancelled or postponed, and so have all the concerts I had booked for.
I listen to some podcasts, mainly about running and politics in the United States. It is hard for us to fathom the depth of the COVID-19 crisis they are going through.
I actually liked a lot about our lockdown. It was good being a little family unit at home. I loved running on nearly empty roads. I took up Zoom yoga classes with my daughter in Christchurch. I wonder about what the new reality is going to look like for us all.