The New Zealand Geographic Board Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa (NZGB) is New Zealand’s national place naming authority responsible for official place names in New Zealand, its offshore islands and continental shelf, and the Ross Dependency of Antarctica.

The names of New Zealand places and features, reflect the culture and heritage of New Zealanders. They also help give us bearings on where these places are located. The NZGB assigns new names, alters or discontinues current ones, approves and adopts recorded names, and concurs with and validates Crown protected area names.

Anyone can propose a new name or alter an existing name for a place or feature. The NZGB uses a number of criteria to make a decision on any proposal. The NZGB encourages consultation with local communities, local iwi, local Councils or any interested person to help it make informed decisions on naming proposals that will endure.

Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa Te Rautaki 2020-2025 (PDF 103KB)

New Zealand Geographic Board Strategy 2020 - 2025 (PDF 229KB)

Read the NZGB’s Annual Report

Read our Māori Language Plan (PDF 814KB)

NZGB meetings

The NZGB meets two or three times a year to consider name proposals. The meetings are not open to the public, however you can read the minutes of previous NZGB's meetings:

Meeting dateLink to minutes
14 October 2020Meeting minutes (PDF 10MB)
27 July 2020Meeting minutes (PDF 11MB)
2 April 2020Meeting minutes (PDF 358KB)
11 December 2019Meeting minutes (PDF 234KB)
18 October 2019Meeting minutes (PDF 387KB)
11 April 2019Meeting minutes (PDF 3MB)
27 September 2018Meeting minutes (PDF 2MB)
28 June 2018Meeting minutes (PDF 3MB)
12 April 2018Meeting minutes (PDF 2MB)
16 October 2017Meeting minutes (PDF 14MB)
18 May 2017Meeting minutes (PDF 3MB)
18 May 2017Meeting minutes (PDF 561KB)
7 July 2016Meeting minutes (PDF 4MB)
20 April 2016Meeting minutes (PDF 356KB)

Please contact the NZGB for the minutes of its previous meetings.

Observers from Te Puni Kōkiri (the Ministry for Māori Development), Te Taura Whiri i te Reo Māori (the Māori Language Commission) and the Te Arawhiti - the Office for Māori Crown Relations attend NZGB meetings. Other observers may also attend at the invitation of the NZGB’s Chairperson.

The Antarctic Names Committee, the Māori Names Committee and the Undersea Feature Names Committee, which are appointed by the NZGB, generally meet once a year to advise and make recommendations to the NZGB.

Last Updated: 1 July 2021