The Dom Post editorial:
What is needed is a two-stage referendum, like the two-stage referendum on MMP. The first, held at the general election, should ask if people want a change. If a majority does, a year later another vote could choose the design.
There should be a nationwide design competition, with an independent body choosing a shortlist of three designs. Voters could then choose by a process of preferential voting. That way, the new flag would have majority support.
I like the idea of a two stage referendum, but the order the Dom Post proposes is flawed in my view. People won’t vote for a change without knowing what the alternative is.
I’d do an initial vote at the election to choose an alternative from say four designs.
Then once an alternative design has been chosen, have a stand alone referendum where you choose between the current NZ flag and the design which won the earlier vote.