Kia ora from Royal Society Te Apārangi | Issue #1104

New discussion paper 'Safeguarding and strengthening opportunity after COVID-19' has been released

He Kāhui Rangahau Early Career Researchers are critical to an innovative, connected and equitable research sector in Aotearoa New Zealand. It takes a long time to grow research capability and significant investment. Yet it can also be lost abruptly.

This paper outlines some facts about the ECR workforce in Aotearoa, highlights their concerns regarding the vulnerability of the current and future workforce and provides discussion points to help safeguard roles and support ECRs in the current COVID-19 situation.

Learn more

Marsden Fund COVID-19 update

Disruption in research offices is anticipated with the recent move to Alert Level 2, and Alert Level 3 for Auckland. There remains a need within the community to have more time to respond to referee reports for the full round. To balance the need for an extension of response time with the panellists’ workloads, the deadline for responses to the main batch of referee reports will be extended by an additional five days to 12 noon on Monday 31 August 2020.

Read more >

Poet Selina Tusitala Marsh wins book of the year for children and young adults

Congratulations to our Fellow and 2019 Humanities Aronui Medal winner, Associate Professor Selina Tusitala Marsh ONZM FRSNZ, who has just been awarded New Zealand's highest prize in children's publishing. Selina won the Margaret Mahy Book of the Year, as well as the Elsie Locke Award for Non-fiction for her book Mophead - a story which recounts her journey from a self-conscious child to New Zealand's Poet Laureate.

Learn more and watch Selina's acceptance speech > 

New issue of agricultural research journal

A new issue of the New Zealand Journal of Agricultural Research has been released. Paper topics include the application of readily available carbon to soil, spatial variation of soil nutrients in dairy pasture paddocks and nitrogen leaching in milk production.


Enter the 180 Seconds of Fascination ataata video competition!

The 2020 Early Career Researchers video competition is open! This is an opportunity for Aotearoa's ECRs to showcase their awesome 
rangahau research for the chance to win one of five prizes. To enter, produce your own ataata video that features yourself or your team explaining your research in no more than 3 minutes.

The competition closes on 18 September 2020. Karawhuia go for it, tuku atu upload! 


He pitopito kōrero News bulletin

Uncovering the social life of plants
In Australia, a team led by Professor Kevin Burns has found colonies of the staghorn fern that display behaviours more often found in ant or bee colonies.
@Victoria University of Wellington — Te Herenga Waka
Estuary management tangled in red tape - Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment
Estuaries are stuck in a "complicated jigsaw" of overlapping management and ever-changing policies and it is impacting the environment, a report by the Parliamentary Commissioner for the Environment shows.
Rachel Thomas @RNZ
Kudos awards finalists announced
Twenty finalists are in the running to receive one of eight awards at the 2020 Kudos Science Excellence Awards gala event in Kirikiriroa Hamilton next month.
@The Kudos
Study reveals how virus first came to New Zealand
Scientists have completed months of detective work to reveal where New Zealand's cases of COVID-19 came from at the height of our crisis.
Jamie Morton @NZ Herald
Government launches long-term biodiversity strategy to bring Kiwis closer to nature
Te Mana o te Taiao – the Aotearoa New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy provides a roadmap for strategic direction, and considers New Zealand’s flora and fauna, introduced species, habitat loss, climate change, pollution, and land and sea use.
Matthew Tso @Stuff
How to wear a non-medical fabric mask safely 
Given the Government's update to COVID-19 Alert levels in Aotearoa, here is a helpful infographic from the World Health Organization on the do's and don’ts of mask wearing. Kia kaha stay safe Aotearoa.

Ngā take o te wā Events

19 August, Online

Arts + Climate Innovation: Can storytelling ignite change?

As part of the 'Arts + Climate' livestream kōrero, climate scientist Professor James Renwick, digital filmmaker Rachael Rakena, Te Tairāwhiti Arts Festival CE Tama Waipara and film producer Kerry Warkia will discuss how arts and culture can provide an entry point for people to understand our natural world and feel inspired to act on the climate crisis.
19 August, Wellington

Human microbiomes - notes for hosts

Professor Julian Crane will give an overview of human microbiomes and why we have them. He will then present evidence of beneficial effects of probiotics from New Zealand studies showing effects on eczema, allergy, diabetes and mental health.
19 August, Wellington

Meaningful research, meaningful lives

In this inaugural professorial lecture, Professor William Levack will give a talk on his research, which focusses on patient experiences of rehabilitation, goal setting processes, and interventions to increase patient engagement in rehabilitation activities.
22 August, Online

'Hour of Code' online coding workshop for children

Recent MacDiarmid Institute PhD graduate, Dr Silvina Pugliese, will be running an online workshop using the coding tool, Scratch. There will be a “code-along” session where children will gain familiarity with the ABCs of coding (or programming) in a practical way, by coding an animation to draw geometrical patterns. 
22 August, Waikanae 

Pā Harakeke - how, when, where and why?

Katarina Tawiri is an expert weaver and kaitiaki of the National Flax Collection at Manaaki Whenua, Lincoln, Canterbury. As part of the 2020 Ngā Manu Winter Lecture Series, Katarina (a Royal Society Te Apārangi sponsored speaker) will give a talk on the importance of conserving this collection. 
26 August, Auckland

Cafe Scientifique - Virtual Reality

In this talk, Dr Roy Davies will explore the origins of Virtual Reality, and associated technologies Augmented and Mixed Reality. He will explore the past, look to the future, and see what, if anything, these technologies are actually good for. 

Ngā whiwhinga Opportunities

Apply for DiscoveryCamp 2021

Experience science in a fun, hands-on environment and work with some of New Zealand's top researchers! DiscoveryCamp is a week-long science camp for current year 12 and 13 Māori and Pasifika students with a genuine passion for the sciences, and will be run in two separate locations: Palmerston North and Dunedin.

Closing date: 28 August 2020
Organisation: MacDiarmid Institute

Apply for NanoCamp 2021

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. Applications are open to current year 12 or 13 students with a strong academic background who are hoping to continue pursuing science. 

Closing date: 28 August 2020
Organisation: MacDiarmid Institute

Wānanga ipurangi | Webinars

18 August
The role of AI in Australia in 2030
The Australian Council of Learned Academies (ACOLA) AI expert group members, including University of Otago's Professor James Maclaurin, will lead this panel discussion on the future opportunities and challenges of AI in government operations and service delivery.
27 August
Sea-floor species health and survival to underwater 'sediment clouds'
In this webinar, Malcolm Clark of NIWA and his team will discuss the results and challenges of their research into the health and survival of two sea-floor species, dog cockles and a common sponge, to suspended sediment levels that could arise from human activities.

Ngā hui Conferences

26 August, Online
Psychology's response in times of crisis - what has changed?
The 2020 New Zealand Psychological Society conference will highlight recent changes in psychological practice, academic research, and society more generally in recent months. 
2 December, Christchurch
Social impact assessment - issues for current practice
Social impact assessment (SIA) is an integral part of impact assessment in Aotearoa New Zealand. This year's two-day conference looks at contemporary issues in the practice of SIA.

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
11 Turnbull Street, Thorndon,
Wellington 6011
Aotearoa New Zealand.

Contact us
+64 4 472 7421 

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