NewsPublished 27 October 2022
Twelve early-to mid-career researchers awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowships to accelerate their research careers
Twelve early-to mid-career researchers have been awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowships that will support them to accelerate their research careers in Aotearoa.
The research programmes of the new fellowships span a wide variety of interesting topics, including research into:
- increasing our understanding of how silicate minerals capture and release carbon dioxide
- how we retain women in software engineering
- what shapes the diversity and universality in music and language, and what that can teach us about the cultural and biological evolution of music around the world
- drawing on information embedded in Antarctic ice cores samples and maramataka Māori lunar calendar to better understand past and future environmental changes in the Southern Ocean.
The Rutherford Discovery Fellowships seek to attract, retain and develop New Zealand’s most talented early-to mid-career researchers and support their career development by helping them to establish a track record for future research leadership.
One of the selection panellists, Professor Clemency Montelle, is a former Rutherford Discovery Fellow herself and knows first-hand the value of being awarded a Fellowship. Professor Montelle said: “being awarded a Rutherford Discovery Fellowship is an immense recognition. It is a substantial investment in individuals to intensively pursue their world-class research programmes at a critical stage in their careers. But beyond this, it is an opportunity to be part of a very special group of young New Zealanders who are not only deeply ambitious for their discipline but also highly driven to make a profound and substantial impact on Aotearoa, its international reputation, and the wellbeing of its people.”
The Chair of the selection panel, Associate Professor Marama Muru-Lanning said: “It has been a privilege to meet and work with scholars who were shortlisted for the Rutherford Discovery Fellowships. They are remarkable people in so many ways. I have great hopes for this year’s successful group and look forward to seeing them thrive and give service to Aotearoa-New Zealand and humanity.”
“Whiria te tangata, ka puta te oranga
Whiria te mātauranga ka puta he tino rangatiratanga
By weaving people, promote wellbeing
By weaving knowledge, promote excellence.”
Royal Society Te Apārangi manages the Rutherford Discovery Fellowship programme on behalf of the New Zealand government. The Rutherford Discovery Fellowship scheme receives government funding from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment of $8 million per annum and awards $800,000 over five years to each research fellow. There are at least 50 Rutherford Discovery Fellows supported at any one time. This year, the Fellowship is helping bring one applicant back to New Zealand to establish a successful research programme here.
For 2022, the Rutherford Discovery Fellowship recipients are:
- Dr Mathew Anker, Te Herenga Waka - Victoria University of Wellington, for research entitled: Lanthanide(II) Hydrides for Nitrogen Fixation and Ammonia Production
- Dr Kelly Blincoe, The University of Auckland, for research entitled: Towards more inclusive software engineering practices and tools to retain women in software engineering
- Dr Julie Deslippe, Te Herenga Waka - Victoria University of Wellington, for research entitled: Plant-soil interactions, biodiversity and mountain ecosystem function in an era of global change
- Dr Terry Isson, University of Waikato, for research entitled: Will silicate minerals be the hero or villain in this warming world?
- Associate Professor Michelle La Rue, University of Canterbury, for research entitled: Southern Ocean connections: a metacommunity approach to understanding changes in the marine predator guild
- Dr Ruggiero Lovreglio, Massey University, for research entitled: Identification and implementation of fundamental crowd behavioural rules
- Dr Phoebe Macrae, University of Canterbury, for research entitled: Cross-disciplinary characterisation of upper aerodigestive function
- Associate Professor Laura Revell, University of Canterbury, for research entitled: Airborne microplastics in a changing climate
- Associate Professor Patrick Savage, The University of Auckland, for research entitled: The music-language continuum: A global analysis
- Associate Professor Guy Sinclair, The University of Auckland, for research entitled: Governing the Pacific: International Legal Ordering in Moana-nui-a-Kiwa
- Dr Hannah Waddington, Te Herenga Waka - Victoria University of Wellington, for research entitled: Transforming the clinical pathway for young autistic children and their whānau in Aotearoa New Zealand
- Dr Holly Winton, Te Herenga Waka - Victoria University of Wellington, for research entitled: Southern Ocean phytoplankton and climate: understanding the ability of phytoplankton to modulate climate in a warmer world.
More information on the new Rutherford Discovery Fellows and statistics about the funding round is available at royalsociety.org.nz/RDFs.