2022 Categories

BEST INDEPENDENT PODCAST SUPPORTED BY ACAST

Free to enter when submitting in any standard category.


The New Zealand Podcast Awards are looking for the finest independent media, making a real difference to the medium.

To be considered for this award, enter any standard category and use the opt-in tickbox at no extra cost. This category is for independent podcasters only.

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BEST COMEDY PODCAST, SUPPORTED BY ROVA

Not to be confused with our entertainment category, this is for podcasts that aren’t just funny… but have finely crafted jokes inside. From panel shows to parody, improv to sitcoms - and entirely new formats that only podcasts can create - judges have been instructed to reward the podcast that tickled the jury the most, not necessarily the one that appealed to everyone. 

Make one judge laugh harder than any of the other entries, and you’ll walk away with the prize.

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BEST NEW PODCAST, SUPPORTED BY TRITON DIGITAL

We also want to champion the best launch of a show across any genre - if you have managed to start well and keep getting better, tell us how. To qualify, you will have started the podcast - and launched six episodes - since July 2021.

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BEST FAMILY PODCAST

Recognizing the shows that entertain children with either high quality storytelling, amazing facts or very silly jokes. OR: parenting podcasts that tell it like it really is, help us overcome those stressful times and give us fresh insights into modern family living.  


Outstanding entries in this category will educate their audience in an accessible and entertaining manner. Children's podcasts should demonstrate how they engage listeners through format, casting and tone.

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BEST HISTORY PODCAST

Be it a deep-dive into Indigenous prehistory or a whistle-stop tour of the twentieth century, the New Zealand Podcast Awards would like to recognise the work being done by the best podcast historians in the country.

Outstanding entries in this category will take care over accuracy and perspective, whilst telling their stories with passion, empathy and relevance.

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THE CLIMATE AWARD

Can podcasts save the planet? Sure they can. We think the intimacy and creativity of podcasting makes it perfect for the job. The climate and environmental emergency can be complex, confusing and sometimes a bit of a turn off, but podcasts can touch hearts and minds like nothing else. 

This award is open to specialist shows in any genre - you don’t have to be specifically about climate change every week to qualify. Put in your best work on the subject.

Winners will be able to demonstrate they are changing the conversation. Either through creative, innovative and compelling audio. Or through sustainable production which measures and minimises harm.

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BEST EDUCATION PODCAST

Acknowledging the important role podcasts now play in education - whether you’re teaching a language, providing self help courses or improving your industry’s professional skills - in this brand new category for 2022.

Outstanding entries in this category will demonstrate the techniques and production skills needed to teach effectively, and show how their compilation extends to a well structured series of lessons for listeners.

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BEST ARTS & CULTURE PODCAST

Celebrating the arts across all cultures: the podcasts that encourage us to seek out new releases or forgotten classics - through reviews, interviews, discussion.... any or none of the above. 

Outstanding entries in this category will go beyond episode recaps or the typical ‘thumbs up/down’ critiques and give listeners fresh angles on the arts they love, with genuine and passionate presentation.

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BEST HEALTH & WELLBEING PODCAST

We’d like to showcase the best self-help and improvement podcasts focusing on positive mental health. Your audio entry should illustrate how you tackle sensitive and sometimes traumatic issues with compassion, and/or provide a toolkit for listeners to apply to their own lives.

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BEST BUSINESS PODCAST

Inspiring the next generation of CEOs, COOs and other acronyms. You could be showcasing stories of great leadership, or helping listeners make every penny count. As with all our categories, we’re looking for shows that reflect the diversity of ideas, backgrounds and industry in our country. 


The best entries will need to be fresh-sounding, personable and inclusive.

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BEST SEX & RELATIONSHIPS PODCAST

Recognising the great work being done in sex education and relationship advice; representing a wider variety of sexual experiences than has previously been the case in mainstream media. 


Outstanding entries in this category will have a high standard of research (whether in terms of guests or subject matter) and presentation that confronts taboos in an entertaining and accessible way.

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BEST RADIO PODCAST, IN PARTNERSHIP WITH BLUEREEF

For shows that might have been lost in the schedule, but found a great home in podcasting. This category recognises the radio programs that appeal to podcast audience's sensibilities, and the key aim of the New Zealand Podcast Awards: to recognise programming that honours fresh perspectives, new formats or alternative viewpoints unheard in mainstream media.


Only podcasts that first aired on broadcast radio are eligible for this category.

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BEST SPORTS PODCAST

Maybe you have incisive analysis, exceptional pundits and great access - or perhaps the discussion is merely a sideshow to the blossoming, unspoken romance between your contributors. Regardless, if you have a loyal audience and an entertaining show, you should enter.  


Outstanding entries in this category will be able to demonstrate a fanbase loyal to the podcast beyond the dreams of most sports clubs. Audience size is not a factor: making niche sports accessible to wider audiences would be as valued here as much as any show pegged to a major sporting tournament.

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BEST CURRENT AFFAIRS PODCAST

Whether you are a business, news and current affairs show, publishing regular discussion formats or original journalism, we want to hear podcasts that have sought insight into our complex society.  Outstanding entries in this category will find new angles on recent events, beyond the headlines and 24-hour news cycles, retaining relevance with an audience beyond the week they were published.

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BEST TRUE CRIME PODCAST

Whether it’s original investigations or pure storytelling, judges will be looking for well-researched programs, with evocative storytelling and human stories at its heart.  


Outstanding entries in this category will have crafted a format around the material available, whether that’s archive, original interviews or other techniques, playing with this most established of podcast genres to create something unique.

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BEST ENTERTAINMENT PODCAST SUPPORTED BY ROVA

If you put a spring in your listeners’ step, if you provide toe-tappin’, chin-strokin’, chuckle-inducin’ escapism... you should apply within.  Outstanding entries in this category will revel in their eclecticism, curating content or features that your subscribers unquestionably consume with open hearts and minds.

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BEST INTERVIEW

Incorporating interview formats across many topics: from books, to comedy, to health, to human interest. Whether your guests are super famous or just really, really interesting... perhaps they’re edited with a light touch, or cut down to size... either way, we want our judges to discover the finest, most compelling, incisive conversation produced this year.


Unlike most other categories, entries can be one extract from a podcast published since July 2022, up to 15mins in length.

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BEST DOCUMENTARY PODCAST

Documentaries take listeners into new worlds and experiences through real people, places, and events. But it's not just about providing facts, we're interested in how producers weave them into an overall narrative that's compelling as well as truthful.

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BEST FACTUAL PODCAST

Entries here should improve our understanding of ourselves and the world in an entertaining and accessible way.  Whether your style is entertaining trivia or deep dives into very very specific topics,  is to make audiences smarter the longer they stay listening, or at least teach them something new.

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BEST FICTION PODCAST

Incorporating drama, readings, and ground-breaking new formats for storytelling.  Outstanding entries in this category will incorporate production that suits the story/stories and sound design that acknowledges an audience primarily of headphone users. New writing, new talent, new ways of looking at the world - these will be noted favourably.

For Best Fiction you can submit up to 30mins of audio. This can be in the form of a single piece, or a selection of up to 5 clips. Please also note that you have to have released at least three episodes in the past eighteen months to qualify. 

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THE RISING STAR AWARD

Calling all new producers and presenters! If you have under two year’s experience in podcasting and doing great things we would like to hear your story. 


You can nominate yourself or a colleague - just outline your contribution through a 15 min audio compilation and a supporting statement that demonstrates your involvement.


Outstanding entries in this category will include… testimony from audiences and colleagues, as well as showcasing the exceptional impact of your work - either qualitatively, quantitatively or both. 

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BEST BRANDED PODCAST

Showcasing the best examples of advertiser-funded podcasts, where both the editorial and sponsor’s aims are seamless and beneficial... and, above all, make a great listen.  Outstanding entries in this category will demonstrate either added value to the brand’s established consumer base, or reach beyond to new audiences.

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BEST NETWORK OR PUBLISHER

This category is for companies that have a public-facing brand around a slate of shows. Your entry should include work from up to five podcasts in single clips, demonstrating the range and quality of content you’re producing. In addition, your written submission should detail your success this year, in whichever ways you define that success.

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BEST MAORI OR PASIFIKA PODCAST OR HOST

Free to enter, when you enter any regular category.

This award recognises podcasts entered into any category, created, hosted or produced by Maori and Pasifika talent.

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THE CREATIVITY AWARD

All entrants are considered for this category automatically by the judges.

Chosen at the discretion of the judges, this award recognises a single piece of audio so creatively dazzling that it deserves its own trophy. That could be the result of great storytelling, sound design, performance, editing… or any combination of the above. 

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THE SPOTLIGHT AWARD

This category is free to enter for any podcast with over 30,000 downloads per episode (after 30 days)

This is one for the big hitters out there: podcasts with sizeable audiences bringing the medium into the mainstream. 


But which of you is the best, according to our judges? Enter any category above and use the opt-in tickbox. 

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THE LISTENERS’ CHOICE SUPPORTED BY ROVA

Our public poll involves getting your listeners to vote for you, for free, on our website. Last year over 20,000 individuals supported their favourite podcast, with those with the most passionate fans doing the best. Could that be your show?


We’ll be opening up for votes when we announce our nominees.

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PODCAST OF THE YEAR

The highest honour of the night, with the winner chosen from the Gold winners of the categories above - so anyone who wins their category has a chance of winning this most prestigious of prizes.


Outstanding entries in this category will have outstanding presentation, original research or writing, appropriately superb sound design and boundary-pushing material that showcases the very best of what New Zealand podcasting can achieve.

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