Kia ora from Royal Society Te Apārangi | Issue #1059

The Age of Artificial Intelligence in Aotearoa

What could the growing use of artificial intelligence mean for Aotearoa and how can we ensure that all New Zealanders can prosper in an AI world? New resources produced by Royal Society Te Apārangi provide an introduction to these issues. 

The Society urges New Zealanders to reflect on what AI-enabled future the nation wants, as the future impact of artificial intelligence on our society will be ultimately determined by decisions taken today.

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George Moon

Hear from Talented School Students Travel Awards alumni George Moon on his journey from computer science to geography, kea citizen science and now on to Paris. 

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Update on science technicians workforce

In May 2017, a report on the science technicians workforce was released. Two years later, what impacts are discernible? This update by Royal Society Te Apārangi outlines developments in the different education and research sectors since.

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Logic, Maths and Modern Society

2018 Rutherford Medal winner Professor Rod Downey FRSNZ will explain that we are living in the most mathematical age of all times and why logic matters in his final talks of his lecture series on 13 and 14 August. 

Register for Dunedin > Christchurch >

CoREs advisory committee chair appointed 

Emeritus Professor Richard Bedford QSO FRSNZ has been appointed to chair the advisory committee for the Centres of Research Excellence 2019/20 funding round.

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Video now available of  President's Address 2019 

Royal Society Te Apārangi President Professor Wendy Larner FRSNZ gave an address 'Research Excellence in a Grand Challenge World' which is now available to watch as well as read.

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He pitopito kōrero News bulletin

Kiwis need to think about what they want from the age of AI, report says
Being more vigilant about who we share our data with, along with regulation, will help keep artificial intelligence technology on the right track, a new report says. 
Katie Kenny @Stuff
AI is here to stay. Now we need to ensure everyone benefits
Artificial intelligence (AI) is already in use in many sectors. Its contribution is expected to rise steadily, driven by advances in data storage, computer processing power and connectivity.
Juliet Gerrard @The Conversation
KiwiNet Research Commercialisation Awards 2019
Distinguished Professor Dame Margaret Brimble FRS FRSNZ won the BNZ Supreme Award at the KiwiNet Research Commercialisation Awards last night for pioneering drug discovery and development. 
The changing context, reach, and impact of health research in Aotearoa, New Zealand 
Reflections from Kath McPherson as she leaves her role as Chief Executive of the Health Research Council of New Zealand. 
Kath McPherson @NZMJ Digest
Science thrives in the Waikato as Kudos Awards names finalists for 2019
Eighteen finalists have been named in the region’s prestigious science excellence awards
recognising research and scientific innovations in agriculture, medical, engineering, environmental, ICT and education. 
@Kudos Science Trust
World's largest parrot found in Central Otago - and it's twice the size of the Kākāpō
Evidence of the world's largest parrot has been uncovered in Central Otago - and it's double the size of the previous title holder.
The most boring chemical element: Podcast inspires paper
Prestigious science journal Nature Chemistry has chosen a witty podcast-inspired Kiwi opinion piece to mark the International Year of the Periodic Table.
Detector Gadget the conservation dog
Gadget, the Jack Russell–fox terrier cross is a certified rodent detector dog, and her job is to track down unwanted rats and mice on New Zealand’s conservation islands.
Alison Ballance @RNZ Our Changing World

Ngā take o te wā Events

10 September, Wellington
Falling Walls Lab New Zealand
Great minds. 3 Minutes. 1 Day. Attend Falling Walls Lab New Zealand 2019: a showcase for the next generation of outstanding innovators and creative thinkers, organised by Royal Society Te Apārangi and the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany. 
12 August, Napier
The MacDiarmid Institute's 2019 Regional Innovation Showcase
This year's theme for the showcase is  “NZ Innovation for Sustainability”. Speakers will discuss how materials science can offer a greener future for our planet and will look at topics such as our zero carbon future and a renewable economy.
14 August, Auckland
Remote Antarctic surveying - 850km from Scott Base
Professor Gary Wilson of GNS Science will talk about the Ross Ice Shelf Programme.
14 August, Wellington
The future of space exploration in New Zealand (and beyond)
The free 90-minute event will discuss NASA JPL’s history, including early links with New Zealand and some of its major milestones, and will look at New Zealand’s emerging space industry and future opportunities.
12 August, Auckland
Wealth, Wellbeing and Capital Gains Tax
Despite significant levels of inequality, the prospects of a capital gains tax in New Zealand now appear remote. Discussion with author Max Rashbrooke and tax expert Lisa Marriott. 
20  August, Wellington
Ko taranaki te maunga
Will people step up now and take the time to learn, know and feel the history of the places they call home? A talk by Rachel Buchanan and Honiana Love.

Ngā whiwhinga Opportunities

Climate Emergency declared by scientists
Scientists are being invited to sign a Bioscience Magazine paper 'World Scientists' Warning of a Climate Emergency to be presented to world leaders.

Organisation: Alliance of World Scientists
DiscoveryCamp Te Tohu Huraina
DiscoveryCamp is a full week of residential lab experience with top scientists, completing hands-on investigations into a range of topics including electron microscopy, laser physics and nano-electronics, for current Year 12 and 13 Māori and Pasifika students with a passion for the sciences.

Organisation:The MacDiarmid Institute
Closing date:  26 August (for applications)
NanoCamp is a full week of residential lab experience with top scientists, completing hands-on investigations into a range of topics including electron microscopy, laser physics and nano-electronics.

Organisation: The MacDiarmid Institute
Closing date: 26 August (for applications)
Human Frontier Science Program Postdoctoral Fellowship
The current call is for early career scientists in frontier, potentially transformative research in the life sciences.

Organisation: Human Frontier Science Program
Closing date: 8 August (initiation deadline)

Ngā hui Conferences

12-15 November/ Murihiku Invercargill
New Zealand Coastal Society Conference
The 2019 conference explores the theme of living on the edge of the great Southern Ocean and the challenges and diversity that this creates.
24-27 November/ Hamilton
Geosciences 2019

The theme of the conference is: “Reporting world-class research results”. This encompasses big-science programmes all the way to investigator-led and post-graduate student thesis projects. 

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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