Bruce Burson is a senior member of the New Zealand Immigration and Protection Tribunal. Prior to the establishment of the IPT in late 2010, he was a senior member of the New Zealand Refugee Status Appeals Authority. He has worked as a refugee lawyer for a number of years in both the UK and New Zealand. For past six years, Bruce has focused on the protection and migration issues relating to environmental degradation and natural disasters, including through the effects of climate change. In his judicial capacity, Bruce has written a number of decisions on the interface between environmentally-related displacement and access to refugee and complementary protection mechanisms. Outside his judicial capacity, Bruce  has worked with agencies such as  UNHCR and IOM on the human mobility implications of climate change, as well as with NGOs such as Displacement Solutions. 


  • Human Rights and the Refugee Definition, Comparative Legal Practice and Theory – (2016)
  • University of Oxford: Forced Migration Review: Facilitating voluntary adaptive migration in the Pacific – (May 2015)