On this page:
- 1. Discussion continues on how science can improve New Zealand
- 2. International attention on sustainable development
- 3. Queen’s Birthday Honours list June 2012
- 4. Canterbury branch celebrates 150 years, 30 June
- 5. Branch event: “Impacts of ocean acidification on shellfish”, 19 June, Nelson
- 6. Branch event: “Peak oil with an emphasis on the economic implications for New Zealand”, 19 June, Palmerston North
- 7. FUSIONZ website for science, technology, humanities jobs
- 8. The Sir Hugh Kawharu Masters Scholarship for Innovation in Science, closes 31 August
- 9. Conference: “Next Generation Sequencing”, 21-22 August 2012, Dunedin
- 10. Public Lecture: Soil Science and the challenge of agricultural production and environmental protection, 20 June, Christchurch
- 11. Our Changing World, Thursday 9.00 pm, Radio New Zealand National 101FM
- 12. Follow the Royal Society of New Zealand on Facebook and Twitter
The Transit of Venus Forum took place last week in Gisborne and Tolaga Bay. Three hundred delegates, speakers and guests gathered to further Professor Sir Paul Callaghan’s vision of making New Zealand “a place where talent wants to live”. Thanks to all those who took part and made it such a successful gathering.
Sessions were recorded by the Ministry for Science and Innovation and are available for viewing on the forum proceedings page.
Attendees have been tasked with providing action points both for the Transit of Venus Forum partners and themselves.
Panel discussions with Kim Hill recorded in Gisborne will air soon on Radio New Zealand as part of this year’s Talking Heads series and lectures for the series are being recorded at Te Papa this month.
The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD) is being held in Rio de Janeiro next week with seven priority areas including jobs, energy, sustainable cities, food security and sustainable agriculture, water, oceans and disaster readiness.
To help establish the research, technology and policy agendas that will be needed after the UN conference, the International Council for Science (ICSU) is holding a major five-day event on Science, Technology and Innovation for Sustainable Development in the days leading up to the event.
Marc Rands has been at the ICSU forum and has been reporting back.
Congratulations to two of our Fellows who received honours.
- Professor Christine Winterbourn, of Christchurch, who was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit – CNZM, for services to science. Professor Christine Winterbourn was the Rutherford Medal winner in 2011.
- Emeritus Professor Peter Leonard Bergquist, of Auckland, who was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit - ONZM, for services to science.
This year the Canterbury Branch of the Royal Society of New Zealand celebrates the formation in 1862 of the Canterbury branch as the Philosophical Institute of Canterbury.
Past and present members, friends and Fellows and partners are invited to join together for a celebratory buffet dinner.
Details: 6.30pm, Saturday 30 June, Rochester and Rutherford Halls of Residence Dining Room, 77 Ilam Road, Christchurch. $55 per person (include drinks).
To reserve a place, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org including clear contact details (phone, email etc), the number attending and payment method.
The Nelson Science Society presents a talk by Nick King: “Impacts of ocean acidification on shellfish: Is the canary in the coal mine already dead”.
Nick is the manager of Cawthron’s shellfish breeding programme and he will talk about some of the early impacts of human-induced ocean acidification on the delicate life stages of shellfish. How is our ocean chemistry changing and how does this affect the biology of some of our oceans’ inhabitants? This will include a good balance of chemistry and biology, while providing a slightly different perspective on climate change issues.
Details: 7.30pm, Tuesday June 19, Venue: A211, NMIT. All welcome. Non-members $2.
6. Branch event: “Peak oil with an emphasis on the economic implications for New Zealand”, 19 June, Palmerston North
The Manawatu Branch of the Royal Society of New Zealand together the New Zealand Institute of Chemistry host a talk by Susan Krumdieck, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Canterbury, and director of the Advanced Energy and Materials System Laboratory.
Peak Oil! There is a big problem, and it has to be dealt with. Is it possible to actually come out ahead? Researchers have the responsibility to develop new methods and tools necessary for policy makers and planners to manage this unaccustomed change. Without the right tools, the policy choice is between denying the problem and hoping for miracles. With the right transition engineering tools, the policy choices are about which changes in land use, incentives or taxes, investments etc. will most efficiently reduce vulnerability and risk, increase adaptive capacity and build in resilience.
Details: 7.30 pm Tuesday 19 June, Te Manawa – Art Gallery, 326 Main Street, Palmerston North.
This week, Fusionz has 3 vacancies for jobs. The latest jobs are:
- Social Science Research Assessor – Marsden Fund, Royal Society of New Zealand, Wellington
- Research Assistant, University of Otago, South Island
- PhD Engineering, University of Waikato, International
For more information and to list your vacancy: http://fusionz.royalsociety.org.nz/
The Sir Hugh Kawharu Scholarship for Innovation in Science is a $10,000 per annum scholarship for study at masters level in the sciences, tenable for up to two years.
The scholarship is applicable across a broad range of science disciplines including the physical, mathematical and computational, earth, environment, marine, social, health, biological, biomedical, human, and behavioural sciences.
The purpose of the scholarship is to support and encourage masters level study by Maori in the sciences. Applications close 31 August.
For more information and for an application form, visit: www.kawharufoundation.org/programmes.
The fourth “Next Generation Sequencing Conference” will be held at the Dunedin Art Gallery, Dunedin, 21-22 August 2012.
The two-day conference presents current research from scientists and the latest bioinformatics tools using next generation sequencing. Topics will include new applications, data management and evaluation, sequence assembly and transcriptome analysis. Rapidly changing sequencing technologies will be explored with a review of the latest technical advances. Research and tools from major next generation sequencing platforms will be presented at this meeting. Cash prizes will be awarded in a poster competition.
A workshop for those new to the field of next generation sequencing will run on 20 August and an advanced workshop will be held on 23 August 2012.
Further information on all aspects of the conference and the link through to the registration page is at www.nzconferences.org.nz/NGS2012/index.html. Early-bird registration closes on 30 June 2012.
10. Public Lecture: Soil Science and the challenge of agricultural production and environmental protection, 20 June, Christchurch
Much of today’s soil science research effort is directed towards improving the efficiency of nutrient cycling within the soil/plant/animal system; reducing the loss of nutrients from soil into water, and mitigating greenhouse gas emissions. Can these multiple objectives be achieved? Keith Cameron, Professor of Soil Science and Head of the Centre for Soil & Environmental Research at Lincoln University, will give an overview of soil science research work that is being conducted to help achieve sustainable agricultural production and environmental protection.
Details:7.30 pm Wednesday 20 June, C3 Lecture Theatre, University of Canterbury.
Presented and produced by Alison Ballance, Ruth Beran and Veronika Meduna.
The Island Bay Marine Education Centre on Wellington’s South Coast recently released 10,000 baby octopuses which had hatched in a tank. Alison Ballance joins a throng of children on open day and meets educator Julian Hodges to see some of the marine life that finds a temporary home at the centre.
At BRANZ, Luca Quaglia is using a modified shipping container to understand the role of ventilation in the moisture management of roof spaces, and Ruth Beran gets to see his test facility just before it’s moved to the South Island for winter.
New Zealand is now home to the world’s biggest dark-sky reserve. The Aoraki-Mackenzie Dark Sky Reserve includes Canterbury University’s Mt John Observatory above Lake Tekapo, Twizel and Aoraki-Mt Cook village, and Veronika Meduna catches up with Margaret Austin, who has spearheaded the project, University of Canterbury astronomer John Hearnshaw and Cambridge University’s Alexander Boksenberg.
Recently retired GNS scientist Bill Stephenson is a leading expert on the effects of earthquake shaking on soft soils. He takes Alison Ballance out to a study site in Wainuiomata near Wellington, where he has set up an array of probes he invented to monitor soil vibrations.
Two science and environment stories air during the week on Afternoons with Jim Mora at 3:35pm, Monday and Thursday. The complete programme is repeated at 1:10am on Sunday mornings.
Please forward the Royal Society of New Zealand Alert newsletter to any non-subscriber to whom the material may be relevant and who may wish to receive the publication regularly. To subscribe (or unsubscribe): www.royalsociety.org.nz/news/subscribe/
Do you have items for Alert? Please send contributions to email@example.com before 5pm Wednesday.