Unfortunately, this is just not at all surprising. I have heard about it from friends and colleagues the whole time I've been here. I also experienced bullying first hand during my employment at a CRI and post employment from people at that CRI. People have valid reasons to worried about their careers if they speak up. Bullies are shielded. Even when they are the CEO.
The article links to a paper from MBIE. In that paper, people are asked to make submissions by March 2021 to MBIE. Given what I have found with MBIE, this is not really encouraging. Maybe someone should see what their plan / process is, if any.
This is the Research Science and Innovation (RSI) strategy document that I have been poking at since last year. Thankfully, they have not released a final version. My research has clearly demonstrated that MBIE has not done a proper consultation, the process lacks a discoverable plan, there is no transparency and certainly no responsiveness.
I respect the Honorable Doctor Megan Woods and the hard yards she is doing on behalf of my fellow kiwis. I am completely sincere in this, but if she is correct that people are happier with the second go with in depth consultation for this strategy, the first effort must have been a dumpster fire. If that is the case, a bit of shuffling in MBIE's policy team might have been considered the proper thing to do.