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Published 16 November 2020

Announcing the winners of 180 Seconds of Fascination

Congratulations to the five winners of the 2020 Early Career Researchers ataata video competition.

Kaiarataki Achiever (Professional)

The Kaiarataki Achiever Award in the professional video category with a $2000 prize has gone to Anna Walsh, a materials scientist at BRANZ.

Anna's research supports the understanding and development of innovative materials that offer the potential to raise the quality of New Zealand buildings. She and her team are working to use structural insulated panels, or SIPs, as a potential solution to New Zealand’s need for fast, affordable housing.

Assessing SIPs in New Zealand - Anna Walsh

Kaiarataki Achiever (Non-Professional)

The Kaiarataki Achiever Award in the non-professional video category with a $2000 prize went to Subin Jeon, a plant molecular biologist from Plant and Food Research.

Subin's work consists of characterising genetic changes arising from CRISPR/Cas9 editing, as part of a project developing fast-flowering plants that are smaller and flower earlier to create crops previously considered too large for indoor farming.

New Zealand's horticulture vs climate change: Fast-flowering to the rescue! - Subin Jeon

Te Ao Māori

Te Ao Māori Award with a $2000 prize has gone to Wanda Ieremia-Allan (Vaie'e, Matautu-Falealili, Safotulafai, Sapapali'i, Lalomanu) and Ammon Apiata (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Toa, Ngāti Koata) from the University of Waikato.

Wanda and Ammon are working to draw attention to early twentieth century indigenous textual archives as contested sites of investigation, celebration and innovation. Their research aims to reawaken indigenous writing, knowledge and histories.

Finding Indigenous Voices in Colonial Archives - Wanda Ieremia-Allan and Ammon 

Moana Oceania

The Moana Oceania Award with a prize of $2000 has been won by Emma Powell of Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington.

Emma's research focusses on the genealogical practices of Cook Islands Māori people. She studies the everyday lives of Cook Islands Māori people to explore how 'akapa'anga, or genealogy, is used and understood.

'Akapapa'anga ara tangata - Emma Powell

People's Choice

The People's Choice Award with a $2000 prize has gone to Fahimi Ali of Weltec.

Fahimi studies how people with disaster experience assess and decide the accuracy of information they receive and to whom the information is relevant.

2020 Judges

Aroha nui thank you to our judges who made this year's competition possible.

  • Seer Ikuror, 2018 competition winner, Massey University
  • Professor Wendy Larner FRSNZ, Royal Society Te Apārangi President
  • Gary Evans, Chief Scientist, MBIE
  • Thomas James, 2019 Prime Minister's Science Prizes Future Scientist Winner, Burnside High School
  • Hoani Langsbury, Director of the Albatross Centre, Otago
  • Gerardine Clifford-Lidstone, Director, Pacific Health, Ministry of Health New Zealand
  • Karen Pratt, Project Lead of Project Reef Life (citizen science project)
  • Professor Juliet Gerrard FRSNZ, Prime Minister's Chief Science Advisor
  • Jenn Corbitt, Science Teaching Leadership Programme Advisor, Royal Society Te Apārangi
  • Natalie Mankelow, Media Consultant, Royal Society Te Apārangi

This competition is funded by the Royal Society Te Apārangi Early Career Researcher Forum with support from MBIE.

Source: Royal Society Te Apārangi