Bio Deirdre Kent


I am a long time environmental activist now living in a retirement village in Waikanae.

Although I was originally a Maths teacher, I have researched and campaigned many issues in my life and have co-founded many public interest organisations. Some have survived and some have not. In my thirties I was an ardent feminist in Tauranga and ended up on the City Council for a term, after standing in 1975 as a Values Party candidate. In Auckland I worked as a full time paid lobbyist for ASH (Action on Smoking and Health) for a decade, standing the heat of the tobacco industry. After that I worked to reduce alcohol advertising (unsuccessfully) but I did manage to merge the health professionals with the highly motivated temperance movement in an organisation called GALA before moving to Christchurch.

After a dalliance with the Alliance Party, I left to found a national newsletter called The Indicator which was to be my first foray into new economics, a passion which was to last. I wrote two books Healthy Money Healthy Planet – Developing Sustainability through New Money Systems (Craig Potton 2005) and The Big Shift – Redesigning Money, Tax, Welfare and Governance for the Next Economic System.(2017).

During my time in Wellington I co-founded an organisation working for Parliamentary Reform, then a Banking Reform group before moving to the Kapiti Coast where I have lived ever since. I was a founding trustee in 2001 of Living Economies Educational Trust.

I was a co-founder of The New Economics Party in 2011 and worked with those wonderful people till 2015.  Its website still exists and those are almost all my entries.

During my years in Otaki I co-founded Transition Town Otaki and the Otaki Timebank. Moving back to Waikanae, I spent two years as secretary of Low Carbon Kapiti working on climate change issues before branching out to work with a Facebook group called Fly-less Kiwis and then to keeping myself alive and healthy through diet and exercise. Hence all the blog posts on Whole Foods Plant Based Eating. I am just an oldie trying to stay alive and trying not be someone who takes more and more medications with all their side effects.

But of course the pandemic has led me back to new economics with a vengeance. I am active again in the Living Economies Educational Trust. In 2022, after involvement with Wise Response, I started a group called Degrowth Aotearoa New Zealand.

Contact Deirdre.