Kia ora from Royal Society Te Apārangi | Issue #1217

Huritau 25: Celebrations for 25 years at the Society

Debbie Woodhall (nee Chan) celebrates 25 years at the Society today and many Alert readers will have had the pleasure of meeting Debbie. She started at the Society in 1998 in the education team, lead by the late Peter Spratt. In 2000, she began managing the newly formed Talented School Students Travel Award scheme. Through that fund, she has supported over 1500 secondary school students to travel overseas and participate in science and technology events such as International Science Olympiads and international science camps. A similar number of students have also had the opportunity to take part in national science and technology extension programmes she managed, including National Science and Technology Fairs, Realise the Dream and Powering Potential. In recent years...

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New research cracks climate-change mystery of Antarctic sea ice

Pioneering airborne technology developed by University of Canterbury researchers with support from Te Pūtea Rangahau a Marsden will be used to map and measure a vast stretch of Antarctic sea ice, revealing more about the critical role it plays in the global climate system. 

Kaiāwhina Matua Pūtea Rangahau Executive Assistant - Research Funding

  • Are you a people person who can work independently?
  • Do you have experience in executive administration?
  • Are you comfortable with technology and work well under pressure?

If this is you, then come and work with us at Royal Society Te Apārangi! We are looking for an Executive Assistant - Research Funding for a busy and varied role based in Thorndon.

Read more and apply now.

He pitopito kōrero News bulletin

Shaking up science

When Grant Robertson talks about how the economy might change post-covid, one of the things he talks about is what he calls an unsung but interesting white paper on science. “It’s really important,” he says. The Minister in charge of the White Paper —  Te Ara Paerangi, Future Pathways — Science and Innovation Minister Ayesha Verrall, is proposing the most radical shakeup of the science sector since National established the Crown Research Institutes and introduced competitive bidding for science funding in 1992.
Richard Harman @Politik

Marketers are targeting teens with cheap and addictive vapes: 9 ways to stem rising rates of youth vaping

Both the latest NZ Health Survey and Snapshot Y10 survey reported high levels of daily vaping among young people aged 18 to 24 (23%) and 14 to 15 (10% overall, but more than 20% among rangatahi Māori). Other studies and reports from school principals confirm we need urgent action to address youth vaping. But what measures should policymakers implement? 
Janet Hoek MRSNZ @The Conversation

New Te Kāuru—Ferrier Research Institute Director appointed

Professor Gary Evans MNZM MRSNZ has been appointed to the role of Director of Te Kāuru—Ferrier Research Institute at Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington. He has recently been employed at the Institute on a secondment as the Chief Science Adviser to the Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment (MBIE).

Making homes safe after floods – Expert Reaction

Forty homes have been red-stickered, and around 5,000 more have been damaged after a record-smashing deluge across the upper North Island. Health hazards such as mould and contamination could be waiting for residents returning to their waterlogged homes. The SMC asked experts to comment on flood damaged houses, and renter/landlord rights.

Statement on women's education in Afghanistan

On the occasion of the United Nations International Day of Education this week, the International Science Council has issued a statement deploring the exclusion of women from university education in Afghanistan and urges the Afghan authorities to reverse their decision.

Ngā take o te wā Events

8 Pēpuere February, Rotorua
Fractal fluency: Using fractal designs to promote health and performance
In association with the 10th International Conference on Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology (AMN10), the MacDiarmid Institute invites you to attend this public lecture at which Professor Richard Taylor will speak on the psychology and neuroscience of the stress-reducing properties of looking at fractal patterns.

16 Pēpuere February, Napier
Earthquake Commemorative Lecture: Liquefaction - what it is, why it matters and what we can do about it

This commemorative lecture for the 1931 Hawke’s Bay Earthquake will be given by Rick Wentz on liquefaction. The focus of this lecture will be to define liquefaction, describe the cause and the conditions under which it typically occurs, and to highlight its potential impacts on the built environment. 

Ngā whiwhinga Opportunities

ANZCCART - Applications invited for New Zealand AEC Member of the year and Animal Care Award 2023

The New Zealand committee of ANZCCART invites nominations for two of its Awards:

  • New Zealand AEC Member of the Year Award: This award recognise the excellent service offered to Animal Ethics Committees by their members throughout New Zealand. The winner of the award will receive travel and registration costs for this year’s ANZCCART Conference in  Adelaide.
  • New Zealand Animal Care Award: This award recognises the contribution made by New Zealand technicians and research assistants working in research, testing and teaching, particularly in regard to the welfare of the animals. The winner of the award will receive travel and registration costs for the ANZLAA New Zealand winter branch meeting, or online participation at the ANZCCART conference.

Applications close 20 April

Applications to the James G. Hay Travel Award are open

The objective of the James G. Hay Travel Award is to enable New Zealand university staff or post-graduate students engaged in research or study in the field of biomechanics to attend and present a paper at the biennial Congress of the International Society of Biomechanics (ISB) being held 30 July - 3 August 2023 in Fukuoka, Japan.

Named after James G. Hay, a pioneer in the discipline of biomechanics in New Zealand, this award has been endowed by the International Society for Biomechanics (ISB) and is managed by Royal Society Te Apārangi.

'Curious Minds Participatory Science Platform: South Auckland' is now open

Applications for 'Curious Minds Participatory Science Platform: South Auckland' are now open, with over $150,000 in funding up for grabs for schools, universities, community and iwi groups. Now in its eighth year, Curious Minds South Auckland offers a unique opportunity for groups to access the resources and support they need to tackle a big question or solve a problem using science, technology, engineering, and maths (STEM). Each group can apply for up to $20,000, excluding GST. Applications are open now with three funding rounds, which close on 27 February, 27 March and 15 May. To find out more and/or get started on an application, please contact Ying Yang on 021 195 4923; email or visit the Curious Minds South Auckland website.

Curious Minds South Auckland is an initiative of Te Hononga Akoranga COMET and MBIE’s A Nation of Curious Minds – He Whenua Hihiri i te Mahara.

Call for input to "10 New Insights in Climate Science"

Each year, ISC Affiliated Bodies Future Earth and The World Climate Research Programme, together with The Earth League, invite leading scientists to review the most pressing issues in climate change-related research in the frame of 10 New Insights in Climate Science (10NICS). The initiative summarises the results into 10 concise insights which highlight recent advances in climate change research, with the purpose of equipping policy-makers and the general public with essential knowledge to make sense of, and confront, the climate emergency.

The initiative is seeking input for the 10NICS 2023 edition from researchers across all disciplines working with issues related to climate change. Deadline for contributions is 17 February:

Kaitohutohu Pūtaiao Matua - Māori | Chief Science Advisor - Maori | Flexible

MfE is seeking a Kaitohutohu Pūtaiao Matua - Māori | Chief Science Advisor - Māori. This advisor will use their deep knowledge of mātauranga Māori, pūtaiao Māori, te Tiriti, as well as strong intellectual leadership and extensive whanaungatanga skills to lead development of complex advice, make connections across related work programmes, and manage a number of relationships across Government and the science sectors.
Applications close: 6 February

To all women working in STEM: Join the STEM Women Global Network

The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) Women Global is an initiative led by ISC Member, the Australian Academy of Science, and supported by the InterAcademy Partnership, that aims to increase the visibility of women in all areas of STEM, providing a valuable resource for promoting gender equity. It has led to the development of an online searchable platform featuring women working in STEM-related disciplines across the world allowing organizations and individuals to search, discover, and contact Women in STEM by their expertise, country and areas of professional interest. All women working in STEM are invited to create a profile on the platform.

Hui ā-Ipurangi | Webinars

21 Pēpuere February, 2pm UTC
ISC Distinguished Lecture Series: “Firepower, Geopolitics and the Future: Rethinking Environmental Security”
The first lecture in the ISC Distinguished Lecture Series: “Basic Sciences for Sustainable Development” will be given by Simon Dalby from the Wilfrid Laurier University, in Waterloo, Canada.


23 Pēpuere February, 1pm UTC
Managing Knowledge Integrity on Information Platforms

The ISC Public Value of, and Trust in Science webinar series is designed to support the ISC membership in responding to the challenges facing science engagement, and those perceptions of science which undermine evidence-based policy, international collaboration and, ultimately, science for sustainability. 

16 Pēpuere February, 4pm
Enduring competencies for designing science learning pathways

In this webinar, Dr Rosemary Hipkins joins Greta Dromgool from the Science Learning Hub to discuss the concept of enduring competencies – competencies that focus on what students can do with their knowledge and understanding. Together these competencies create a framework for informing our thinking about science learning, curriculum and assessment.

15 Pēpuere February, 11am
Mapping genetic loci linked to myrtle rust resistance in mānuka

New Zealand mānuka (Leptospermum scoparium) inoculated with Austropuccinia psidii (the causal agent of myrtle rust) can display symptoms ranging from high susceptibility to full resistance. The occurrence of asymptomatic plants in seedling populations indicates that resistance may be present in mānuka and that it is controlled genetically. Hear David Chagné, Plant & Food Research, talk about his work.

Mō Te Apārangi | About Us

Royal Society Te Apārangi supports New Zealanders to explore, discover and share knowledge. Our varied programmes provide support and opportunities for researchers, teachers and school students, together with those who are simply curious about the world. To learn more visit
Royal Society Te Apārangi
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Wellington 6011
Aotearoa New Zealand.

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