Explore as a

Share our content

James Cook Research Fellowship Guidelines for Applicants

Table of Contents

Proposal guidelines for applicants | Ngā aratohu mā ngā kaitono

The 2023 James Cook Research Fellowship Applicant Guidelines

Changes for 2023 | Ngā rerekētanga mō te tau 2023

  • There are no major changes for 2023.
  • As a condition of contract, research outputs fully or partially arising from Rutherford Discovery Fellowship funding must meet the MBIE Open Research Policy
  • In the 2023 round, Royal Society Te Apārangi is offering Fellowships for:
    • health sciences
    • engineering sciences and technologies
    • social sciences (including research of relevance to peoples of New Zealand and/or the South-West Pacific)

Brief information about the James Cook Research Fellowships | Mō te James Cook Research Fellowships

The James Cook Research Fellowships, administered by Royal Society Te Apārangi on behalf of the New Zealand Government, are awarded to researchers who have the requisite qualifications and experience, and are able to demonstrate that they have achieved national and international recognition in their area of research. The fellowships allow them to concentrate on their chosen research for two years without the additional burden of administrative and teaching duties.

The funding package annually is $100,000 plus GST and $10,000 plus GST in relevant expenses. It is expected that a major piece of research will be undertaken that will benefit New Zealand and advance research in the particular discipline.

More information about the fellowships, including the Terms of Reference, is available at James Cook Research Fellowships on our website.

Eligibility | Ngā paearu āheitanga

The James Cook Research Fellowships are recognised as one of the premier awards for scientific, technological and social science research. The primary intention of the award of fellowships is the recognition of sustained excellence in research. They are awarded to researchers who have the requisite qualifications and experience and are able to demonstrate that they have achieved national and international recognition in their area of research.

Please note that successful applicants will be required to take up their fellowships within a year of appointment. Applicants must:

  • be either Aotearoa New Zealand citizens or applicants who have continuously resided in Aotearoa New Zealand for at least three months prior to their application and hold, or are deemed to hold, a New Zealand resident visa.
  • be associated with an Aotearoa New Zealand-based research institution that can provide the appropriate support and facilities to enable the applicant to succeed in their fellowship for the full duration of the fellowship.

Research categories | Ngā wāhanga o ngā rangahau

James Cook Research Fellowships are available from time to time in each of the following categories:

  • biological sciences (including biotechnology)
  • engineering sciences and technologies
  • health sciences
  • physical sciences (including chemical sciences; geosciences, mathematical and information sciences)
  • social sciences (including research of relevance to peoples of New Zealand and/or the South-West Pacific).

These categories and the descriptions following each should be read to be inclusive rather than exclusive. The intention is for the five categories to cover all areas of scientific and technological research.

In the 2023 round, Royal Society Te Apārangi is offering Fellowships for:

  • health sciences
  • engineering sciences and technologies
  • social sciences (including research of relevance to peoples of New Zealand and/or the South-West Pacific)

Selection criteria | Paearu Whiriwhiri

James Cook Research Fellows will be selected on the basis of their research knowledge, skills, and ideas, their ability to demonstrate that they have achieved national and international recognition in their area of research expertise, quality of the proposed research project, and, the applicant’s ability to communicate their research to the public. Fellowships need not be specifically targeted at any topic area but should be of potential benefit and relevance to Aotearoa New Zealand.

Applications will be assessed in their particular categories by assessment panels, the members of which will represent a broad range of disciplines. Panel recommendations must be ratified by the James Cook Research Fellowship Selection Committee, chaired by the Governor-General of New Zealand, and consisting of the President of Royal Society Te Apārangi and the Chair of the Academy Executive Committee of Royal Society Te Apārangi.

The three selection criteria, and the relative weighting for each criterion, are:

  1. Research calibre of the applicant (60%)
  2. applicant's research knowledge, skills, and ideas
  3. evidence of applicant’s national and international standing.
  4. Quality of the research project (25%)
  5. merit of the proposed research
  6. robust nature of the research based on a sound theoretical and methodological framework
  7. indication of how the research advances the discipline or breaks new ground
  8. where relevant, the relation of the research to the themes of Vision Mātauranga and broader engagement with Māori.
  9. Outreach and communication (15%)
  10. proposed communication of the research findings both scholarly and more broadly to the Aotearoa New Zealand public.
  11. expectation that the research outcomes will generate national media coverage
  12. highlight other opportunities to engage the public in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Additional rules | Ngā ture tāpiri

  • Former successful applicants may not apply for a second fellowship.
  • Unsuccessful applicants may re-apply in the next application round.
  • No feedback will be provided to unsuccessful applicants.
  • Employment outside the host organisation is not permitted.
  • Every fellowship shall be tenable at a university or other research institution or organisation approved by Royal Society Te Apārangi.
  • The term of the fellowship will be for two years.
  • The tenure of every fellowship shall commence on the date on which the Fellow enters upon his/her programme of research.
  • The fellowship will be made by way of a standard contract between the Fellow, their host institution and Royal Society Te Apārangi.
  • The nominated host institution must undertake to support the researcher and the work described in the application for the duration of the fellowship by providing the necessary intellectual and administrative support.
  • The Fellow will work full-time as a researcher on the research project (except where otherwise agreed with Royal Society Te Apārangi). For the James Cook Research Fellowship, full time is considered 0.9 FTE on the research project with 0.1 FTE available for other administrative duties.
  • The normal conditions of employment in the host organisation shall apply to the Fellow.
  • Co-tenure: The fellowship shall not be tenable with other fellowships or other potentially conflicting commitments, except with the written permission of Royal Society Te Apārangi.
  • The James Cook Research Fellowship and Royal Society Te Apārangi should be acknowledged in any written or published material produced as a result of research undertaken in the course of the Fellowship, by using the phrase, “Supported by the James Cook Research Fellowships from Government funding, administered by Royal Society Te Apārangi” or similar wording.


Application closing date and Timetable | Wā kati o ngā tono me te wātaka

The closing date for applications is Thursday 18 May 2023, at 5pm New Zealand Standard Time (NZST).



Thu 23 Mar 2023

Online portal opens

Thu 18 May 2023

Online portal closes, 5 pm NZST

Thu 22 June 2023

Deadline for referee reports to be submitted, 5pm NZST

No later than 30 June 2023

Proposals and referee reports sent to panellists

Fri 28 July 2023

Deadline for panellist’s scores to be submitted, 5pm NZST

August 2023

Panel video-conferences

September 2023

Ratification of funding recommendations

October 2023 (TBC)

Fellows announced


Guidelines for completing the proposal sections | Ngā aratohu mō te whakaoti i ngā wāhanga o te tono

The proposals are to be submitted on the James Cook Research Fellowship online portal. Researchers need to contact their host institution’s research office to obtain their login and application number for the portal.

Researchers should write their proposals directly into the portal using the forms and templates provided. The online portal may also be used to save and print the entire document for checking and for your own records.

The layout of the entire application on the online portal is automatic. The limit on space in all sections of the downloadable templates should be adhered to and the typeface should be 12-point Times, or of similar size font, single spacing, with margins of 2 cm on the left and 2 cm on the right sides of the page. Instructions may be removed, but not the margins. No additional pages or attachments will be accepted other than where requested or required.

When you have received your logon to the online portal, a unique application number will automatically be generated at the top of each page of the application form, along with your name and initials.

Applying in te reo Māori

If applicants wish to complete some, or all, sections of their proposal in te reo Māori, they are able to do so. However, because some of the panellists who will be assessing their proposal will not be fluent in te reo Māori, an English translation of the section(s) will be necessary. Applicants, therefore, are able to provide a translation for those sections as supplementary material over and above the page limits set for the relevant section of the proposal. Applicants must still keep to the set page limits for the “official” proposal, but can use additional pages for the translation. The portal at present will not allow additional documents or pages, so we ask that anyone who is providing a translation sends this by email by the application closing time. If an applicant chooses not to provide a translation, then we will arrange for a translation to be made by one of the third-party translation services that we use for our own publications. Please note that because this will be carried out by a third-party service, we will not be able to guarantee the accuracy of the translation.

1          Identification

This section is for personal details. If any of your contact details should change at any stage after the proposal is submitted, please inform Royal Society Te Apārangi as soon as possible.


There is a facility in this section of the portal for applicants to add or create an ORCID ID. An ORCID ID is preferred from all applicants, but is not mandatory. Please click on the "Create or Connect your ORCID ID" button on the top right of the "Contact Details" section and follow instructions.

2          Research area

This section relates directly to the programme of research that you are proposing to undertake.


Please select the most appropriate panel to assess your application:

  • biological sciences
  • engineering sciences and technologies
  • physical sciences
Fields of research (FOR) classification, and type of research activity:

The FOR classification allows research and development (R&D) activity to be categorised according to the field of research. In this respect, it is the methodology used in the R&D that is being considered. Please enter up to THREE 6-digit codes, using codes that are as specific as possible. For a list of codes, please refer to the Field of Research Calculator on our website.

Please indicate the % share of each FOR code to the proposed research. The shares should add up to 100%. Please also give key words or key phrases of no more than 255 characters in total, in a single list (separated by commas or semi-colons; please avoid using the return key).

Socio-economic objectives (SEO)

The Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification (ANZSRC) SEO classification allows R&D activity in Australia and New Zealand to be categorised according to the intended purpose or outcome of the research rather than the processes or techniques used in order to achieve this objective. Please choose up to THREE codes from the drop-down field, using codes that are as specific as possible. Please also indicate the % share of each SEO code to the proposed research. The shares should add up to 100%. For a list of codes, please refer to the Socio-Economic Objectives Calculator on our website.

Please also indicate project key words or phrases not exceeding 255 characters in total (separated by commas or semi-colons; please do not use the return key).

Type of research activity

Collection of research activity data for James Cook Research Fellowship proposals will form part of our reporting obligations for the New Zealand Research Information System (NZRIS). The most common setting for James Cook Research Fellowship proposals is 100% “Pure basic research”.

The four activities are:

  • Pure basic research (default setting for James Cook Research Fellowship): is experimental and theoretical work undertaken to acquire new knowledge without looking for long term benefits other than the advancement of knowledge.
  • Strategic basic research: is experimental and theoretical work undertaken to acquire new knowledge directed into specified broad areas in the expectation of practical discoveries. It provides the broad base of knowledge necessary for the solution of recognised practical problems.
  • Applied research: is original work undertaken primarily to acquire new knowledge with a specific application in view. It is undertaken either to determine possible uses for the findings of basic research or to determine new ways of achieving some specific and predetermined objectives.
  • Experimental development: is systematic work, using existing knowledge gained from research or practical experience, which is directed to producing new materials, products, devices, policies, behaviours or outlooks; to installing new processes, systems and services; or to improving substantially those already produced or installed.

3          Vision Mātauranga themes

Vision Mātauranga is a policy about innovation, opportunity and the creation of knowledge that highlights the potential contribution of Māori knowledge, resources and people.

Applicants should identify which, if any, of the four Vision Mātauranga themes below are associated with the proposed research. If this is not applicable to your proposed research, you must tick N/A AND provide a BRIEF rationale for this decision. (For further information on Vision Mātauranga please see Section 10.)

The four themes are:

  • Indigenous Innovation, which involves contributing to economic growth through distinctive research and development
  • Taiao, which is concerned with achieving environmental sustainability through iwi and hapū relationships with land and sea
  • Hauora/Oranga, which centres around improving health and social wellbeing
  • Mātauranga, which involves exploring indigenous knowledge.

Please note that Vision Mātauranga is included as a selection criterion (2d):

  • Where relevant, proposals should consider the relation of the research to the themes of Vision Mātauranga and how the project will engage with Māori.

If one or more themes do apply, up to one additional page will be available across sections 7‑12 of the application. This gives applicants an opportunity to more easily integrate Vision Mātauranga into the conceptual framework and/or research design of the proposed programme, for example, demonstration of consultation, linkages, outcomes or other relevant information. Alternatively, applicants may to choose to gather all relevant Vision Mātauranga information under a separate heading (Section 10), or use any combination of information across sections 7-12.

If you have ticked one or more Vision Mātauranga themes, please consider each theme one at a time. Indicate the proportion of the proposed research that aligns with that theme. Note that it is possible for the combined total to be over 100% (for example, if the proposed research is entirely Mātauranga and also has a Hauora/Oranga theme, the contributions could be 100% and 10% respectively).

4          Curriculum Vitæ

To assist the panel in assessing your calibre as a researcher, please upload an up-to-date curriculum vitæ. Please use the NZ RS&T-CV template available on the online portal. Only sections PART 1 through to PART 2a are required to be completed.

5          Programme title

Provide a title that describes the nature of your proposed programme of research. The title of your proposal should be in plain English (not specialist scientific jargon) and no more than 30 words in length. Royal Society Te Apārangi reserves the right to request the title be amended if it does not adequately describe the nature of the research being undertaken.

6          Summary

In approximately 300 words, please provide a summary of the whole programme of research in a form that can be understood by non-specialists. Use straightforward language, but without loss of accuracy or excessive over-simplification. This should include the essence of the research programme (i.e. encompassing the objectives, method(s) and knowledge transfer). Note that this will be made publicly available should the proposal be successful, and may be published as part of the James Cook Research Fellowship’s publicity.

If the summary contains confidential or sensitive material, please indicate this at the summary start: “This summary contains sensitive or confidential information and will be released when the contract is completed”.

Application overview – sections 7-12

The following sections 7-12 will be used to assist the panel in assessing the quality of your research calibre, the quality of the research project, and your potential outreach and communication plan.

  • If no Vision Mātauranga theme has been identified in Section 3, the total page limit for sections 7-12 is SIX pages, with no set limit for each section within this.
  • If one or more Vision Mātauranga themes have been identified in section 3, the total page limit for sections 7-12 is SEVEN pages, with no set limit for each section within this. This will enable applicants to better integrate Vision Mātauranga into the conceptual framework and/or research design of the proposed programme across sections 7-12.

Note that it is up to the applicant to decide on how much space to allocate to each section - there is no set page requirement. Please read the definitions of these sections clearly and avoid repetition.

If you are using figures, please note this proposal is printed in black and white. An electronic version in colour is also supplied for the panellists’ reference.

7          Research calibre of the applicant

To assist the panel in assessing your research calibre, please describe your research excellence in terms of knowledge, skills, and ideas. This is where you can highlight and explain your most noteworthy research discoveries, insights or advances, and outcomes for wider communities.

Expected sources of evidence may include but are not limited to: work of outstanding originality; work that has inspired others and affected the research agenda; work in Mātauranga Māori; authorship of definitive textbooks; community engagement (for example, work across iwi, hapū); stakeholder relationships and pathways for research uptake/knowledge transfer; external grant funding; awards, prizes or other recognition of research quality; peer esteem; contribution to research commercialisation; entrepreneurial activity; thought leadership (for example, conceptual development of a research field internationally); direct policy facing or public engagement work, etc.

8          Background

Give a brief overview of the proposed research in plain English, and indicate how it relates to work already done, by yourself and/or others, in this field.

9          Research objective(s) and method(s)

State your proposed research objectives, methods, timetable, data sources, and, if applicable, how you plan to transfer the knowledge gained from your research.

If you identify one or more Vision Mātauranga themes in Section 3, please elaborate here how this fits in with your proposed research. For example, you may wish to discuss consultations and linkages, relevance, conceptual framework and/or proposal design, and outcomes (in addition to statements in Section 10).

10        Vision Mātauranga

As mentioned in the selection criteria, proposals should, where relevant, consider the relation of the research to the themes of Vision Mātauranga and how the project will engage with Māori.

If you have identified one or more Vision Mātauranga themes in Section 3, please include discussion of these theme(s) within your application, for example, on consultation and linkages, relevance, conceptual framework and/or proposal design, outcomes or other relevant information. Applicants have the opportunity to integrate Vision Mātauranga into the conceptual framework and/or research design of the proposed programme across sections 7-12. Alternatively, applicants may choose to gather all relevant Vision Mātauranga information under a separate heading (Section 10), or use any combination of information across sections 7-12.

How do I decide whether to include a Vision Mātauranga statement in my proposal?

The five ways of conceptualising Vision Mātauranga in your research (see below) may help you decide if this applies to your project. The categories have been adapted from those on the National Science Challenge, Biological Heritage website hosted by Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research. Please note, however, that these categories are fluid. There may well be overlap between them as in categories 2 and 3 in terms of the nature and degree of relevance to Māori, and not every point in each category need apply. The original categories were set out by Ministry for Business Innovation and Employment (MBIE) in information for the Endeavour Fund c. 2015.

Ways of conceptualising Vision Mātauranga in your research
  1. Research with no specific Māori component
  • No mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge) is used.
  • Māori are not associated with the research process (for example, not on any research management / advisory / governance panels, it is not inclusive of Māori land or institutions, nor the subject of any component of the research).
  • Work is not likely to be of greater direct relevance to Māori than members of any other group.
  1. Research specifically relevant to Māori
  • There is specific relevance to Māori.
  • Mātauranga Māori may be used in a minor way to guide the work and its relevance to Māori.
  • It includes work that contributes to Māori aspirations and outcomes.

3              Research involving Māori

  • Mātauranga Māori may be incorporated in the project, but is not central to the project.
  • Research is specifically and directly relevant to Māori and Māori are involved in the design and/or undertaking of the research.
  • The work typically contributes to Māori (for example, iwi, hapū, organisations) aspirations and outcomes.

4              Māori-centred research

  • The project is Māori led, and where Mātauranga Māori is used alongside other knowledges (for example, through frameworks, models, methods, tools, etc.).
  • Kaupapa Māori research is a key focus of the project.
  • Research is typically collaborative or consultative, with direct input from stakeholders.
  • There is alignment with and contribution to Māori (for example, iwi, hapū, organisations) aspirations.

5              Kaupapa Māori research

  • Mātauranga Māori is incorporated, used and understood, as a central focus of project and its findings.
  • Research is grounded in te ao Māori and connected to Māori philosophies and principles.
  • Research typically uses kaupapa Māori research methodologies.
  • Te reo Māori may be a central feature to this kaupapa or research activity, and key researchers have medium to high cultural fluency or knowledge of tikanga and reo.
  • The research is generally led by a Māori researcher; non-Indigenous researchers may carry out research under the guidance/mentoring of a Māori researcher.
  • Māori participation (iwi/hapū/marae/individual) is high.
  • The work contributes strongly to Māori (for example, iwi, hapū, organisations) aspirations and outcomes and is mana enhancing.
Developing a Vision Mātauranga statement

It is important to keep in mind that there is no single approach or prescription for Vision Mātauranga: one size does not fit all and there are many possible ways of addressing Vision Mātauranga. Vision Mātauranga should not, however, be seen as an add-on, nor should it be treated as separate from the research, methods or people involved in the project. A holistic approach that considers reciprocity and relationships is therefore desirable.

Vision Mātauranga does not begin and end with your Vision Mātauranga statement. You should document how you have considered Vision Mātauranga and demonstrate applicable actions and relationships throughout the research. The following questions may be useful to consider when conceptualising and writing your project:

  • Have you co-created the research topic/issue with an iwi or Māori organisation?
  • What does working in partnership with iwi mean to you as researchers?
  • To what extent have you discussed the research with Māori partners and agreed on the methodology you will use?
  • Was there full disclosure and informed consent to the proposed research with Māori partners? How has that agreement/informed consent been agreed to?
  • What provisions have you made to ensure there is appropriate technology transfer to Māori stakeholders as the research proceeds and as findings become available towards the end of the project?
  • Are there benefits to Māori? What are they?
  • How will you share the research outcomes with Māori?
  • Is there a Tiriti o Waitangi component or requirement in your research?
  • Is the research mana enhancing?
Vision Mātauranga Resources

Below you will find a non-exhaustive list of published resources that describe, discuss, and talk about how researchers have engaged with Vision Mātauranga and kaupapa Māori research. These range from early conceptions of Vision Mātauranga to more recent frameworks. The resources underscore the diverse ways Vision Mātauranga may be approached across disciplines and methodologies.

11        Outreach and communication

Please propose a plan to communicate your research findings both scholarly and more broadly to the public of Aotearoa New Zealand. Here, you can outline how you expect your research outputs and outcomes[1]  will generate national media coverage, and highlight any other opportunities to engage the public of Aotearoa New Zealand.

12        References

It is important to support these sections by means of references. Please ensure that these are not restricted to your own work. Please also ensure that the references have been published, to ensure that they are readily accessible when the proposal is being assessed. Authors must verify all references.

A guide for the reference list:

  • The list can be in 10-point type.
  • Start each reference on a new line (numbering is optional).
  • For three or more authors, list the first three names followed by "et al.".
  • Ensure you include the journal name (abbreviated if desired), year of publication, volume number and page numbers.
  • Please bold your own references.

Please note the following examples created by R Siegel along with the format and punctuation (ordered in Journal, Book, Chapter in a book and Web site):

  1. Jemal A, Siegel R, Ward E, et al. Cancer Statistics, 2008. CA: Cancer J Clin 2008; 58:71-96; DOI: 10.3322/CA.2007.0010.
  2. Eifel PJ, Levenback C. American Cancer Society Atlas of Clinical Oncology: Cancer of the Female Lower Genital Tract. Hamilton, Ontario: BC Decker; (2001).
  3. Park BH, Vogelstein B. Tumor-Suppressor Genes. In: Kufe DW, Pollock RE, Weichselbaum RR, et al, eds. Cancer Medicine. 6th ed. Hamilton, Ontario: BC Decker; 2003:87-106.
  4. Health on the Net Foundation. Health on the Net Foundation code of conduct (HONcode) for medical and health Web sites. Available at: http://www.hon.ch/HONcode/Conduct.html. Accessed August 26, 2003.

13        Other funding

Where other funding for research relevant to the proposal is being provided or sought, it must be detailed in the Other Funding worksheet. It is appreciated that the applicant will be involved in applications to other funding sources, or have funding for related work. This is to be encouraged. However, to assist in the assessment of the James Cook Research Fellowships the selection panels need to be aware of other funding applied for or received.

Indicate whether non-James Cook Research Fellowship funding (for example, Marsden Fund, Health Research Council (HRC), Centre of Research Excellence (CoRE), Tertiary Education Commission (TEC), Commercial, Other) has been: (i) received; or, (ii) applied for, for this or for research relevant to this proposal.  Include information on the FTEs applied for or received from non-James Cook Research Fellowship government funding sources.

14        Referees

You are required to obtain two referee reports to support your application, at least one of which should be from an overseas referee.

Referees should not be involved in the proposed programme of research or be in your chain of line management. Neither should they be close colleagues, former research supervisors, co-authors, collaborators or relatives.

Referees should be capable of judging the quality of the proposed programme of research and must be able to answer all the questions asked:

  • What is your opinion of the research calibre of the applicant?
  • What is your opinion of the merit, quality and feasibility of the applicant's proposed research programme?
  • Please comment on the applicant’s outreach and communication plan.

You should approach your referees prior to the closing date to ensure they are available and willing to assist with your application through writing a referee report. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that referees submit their reports directly to Royal Society Te Apārangi by 5pm, Thursday 22 June 2023 (New Zealand Standard Time), the closing date for referee reports.

There are some useful example templates for approaching referees posted on the online portal.  These are found in the Referees section and the greyed-out templates will become available after you start entering your choice of referees.

  • The “Referee Letter” button generates a template with information about the James Cook Research Fellowship scheme and a few details of your proposal – this may help with your initial approach to your referees. You may use this template if you wish.
  • Note that the “Send Email” button is only active after the closing date for applications. It is used to email the relevant information to referees that have been added to the portal after the application closing date (see below).

All referees listed by the applicant on their application will be emailed by Royal Society Te Apārangi immediately after the application closing date. This is the only time we will email referees on behalf of the applicant. The referee email invite contains a URL link to a separate online portal to be used for referees to upload their reports.

Please note:

  • It is your responsibility to ensure your referees have submitted their reports to Royal Society Te Apārangi by the closing date. To be eligible for a Fellowship, a complete set of referee reports must be received by Royal Society Te Apārangi by 5pm, Thursday 22 June 2023 (New Zealand Standard Time).
  • If you need to add additional referees to your application after the application closing time, this can be done through logging into the portal and adding a referee to the table in the Referee section. It is important to click the “Send Email” button after adding a referee to ensure your referee is sent the application, the referee guidelines and a URL link to complete their report.
  • After the email request has been sent from the online portal by either Royal Society Te Apārangi or yourself, it is prudent for you to check that the referees have received the invitation to review your application. Occasionally, email is inadvertently identified as spam and is sent to a referees ‘junk’ folder in their email client.
  • Each referee report will be treated as confidential by Royal Society Te Apārangi. The selection panel may independently obtain reports from other people it considers competent to referee your application.
  • The online portal can be checked by applicants for notification of when Royal Society Te Apārangi has received each of the referee reports.
  • If Royal Society Te Apārangi receives more than two referee reports, only the first two referee reports received will be used for appraisal.
  • At the deadline for referee reports, applicants are given a 24-hour period to solicit any missing or new referee reports needed to obtain 2 referee reports and comply with the eligibility requirement.

15        Declaration

Please ensure that all information contained in the application is true and accurate.

A duly authorised agent of the host organisation and the applicant are to sign the declaration, agreeing to the listed terms and conditions.

Please note that confirmation by the host organisation of their acceptance of the programme is a precondition for your application to be assessed.

Statistical information | Ngā mōhiohio tatauranga

Royal Society Te Apārangi encourages applications from all eligible members of the New Zealand research community. To monitor the profile of different groups of applicants and identify funding trends and gaps, Royal Society Te Apārangi would appreciate applicants providing the information requested in this section of the online portal. Statistical information (for example, date of birth, gender, ethnicity, years since PhD) is used for statistical purposes only. It is not accessible by anyone involved in the assessment of proposals. Personally identifiable information will not be shared with third parties without your authorisation.

In order to evaluate, and assess the long-term impact of our activities, we will keep an electronic record of the information we hold about you indefinitely unless you request that your private data be destroyed.

The statistical data will be used by Royal Society Te Apārangi for statistical purposes only.

If you want to verify, modify, correct or delete any private data, you should apply to the Privacy Officer of Royal Society Te Apārangi (privacy.officer@royalsociety.org.nz).

For “Gender”, there is a “Gender Diverse” category in addition to Male and Female. This is in line with guidelines and categories used by Statistics New Zealand.

MBIE Open Research Policy | Kaupapahere Rangahau Tuwhera MBIE

Royal Society Te Apārangi, as an administrator of Government research funding, has adopted the MBIE Open Research Policy. A condition of contract for successful proposals with therefore be that research outputs fully or partially arising from Rutherford Discovery Fellowship funding must comply with the MBIE Open Research Policy on Open.

Enquiries | Ngā pātai

If you require further information about the James Cook Research Fellowships, please email us at james.cook@royalsociety.org.nz or phone (04) 470 5764.


Appendix I: Glossary of te reo Māori terms | Āpitihanga I: Papakupu o ngā kupu reo Māori

Definitions taken from maoridictionary.co.nz

Ka mihi ki a Ahorangi Angus Macfarlane, Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha, mō tēnei. With thanks to Professor Angus Macfarlane, University of Canterbury, for his input.


the Māori name for New Zealand


affection, sympathy, charity, compassion, love, empathy


ancestor with continuing influence, god, demon, supernatural being, deity, ghost, object of superstitious regard, strange being - although often translated as 'god' and now also used for the Christian God


kinship group, clan, tribe, subtribe - section of a large kinship group and the primary political unit in traditional Māori society. It consisted of a number of whānau sharing descent from a common ancestor, usually being named after the ancestor, but sometimes from an important event in the group's history. A number of related hapū usually shared adjacent territories forming a looser tribal federation (iwi)

Hau kāinga

home, true home, local people of a marae, home people


health, wellbeing


gathering, meeting, assembly


extended kinship group, tribe, nation, people, nationality, race - often refers to a large group of people descended from a common ancestor and associated with a distinct territory


home, address, residence, village, settlement, habitation, habitat, dwelling


trustee, minder, guard, custodian, guardian, caregiver, keeper, steward


guardianship, stewardship, trusteeship


adult, elder, elderly man, elderly woman, senior person - a person of status within the whānau or iwi


philosophy, topic, policy, matter for discussion, plan, purpose, scheme, proposal, agenda, subject, programme, theme, issue, initiative

Kaupapa Māori

Māori approach, Māori topic, Māori customary practice, Māori institution, Māori agenda, Māori principles, Māori ideology - a philosophical doctrine, incorporating the knowledge, skills, attitudes and values of Māori society


gift, present, offering, donation, contribution - especially one maintaining social relationships and has connotations of reciprocity

Kōiwi tangata

human bones or remains


to tell, say, speak, read, talk, address; speech, narrative, story, news, account, discussion, conversation, discourse, statement, information


be painful, sore, hurt


prestige, authority, control, power, influence, status, spiritual power, charisma - mana is a supernatural force in a person, place or object. Mana goes hand in hand with tapu, one affecting the other. The more prestigious the event, person or object, the more it is surrounded by tapu and mana. Mana is the enduring, indestructible power of the atua and is inherited at birth, the more senior the descent, the greater the mana. The authority of mana and tapu is inherited and delegated through the senior line from the atua as their human agent to act on revealed will. Since authority is a spiritual gift delegated by the atua, man remains the agent, never the source of mana. This divine choice is confirmed by the elders, initiated by the tohunga under traditional consecratory rites (tohi). Mana gives a person the authority to lead, organise and regulate communal expeditions and activities, to make decisions regarding social and political matters. A person or tribe's mana can increase from successful ventures or decrease through the lack of success


hospitality, kindness, generosity, support - the process of showing respect, generosity and care for others


Māori, Indigenous New Zealander, Indigenous person of Aotearoa/New Zealand - a new use of the word resulting from Pākehā contact in order to distinguish between people of Māori descent and the colonisers


courtyard - the open area in front of the wharenui (meeting house), where formal greetings and discussions take place. Often also used to include the complex of buildings around the marae


knowledge, wisdom, understanding, skill - sometimes used in the plural; education - an extension of the original meaning and commonly used in modern Māori with this meaning


life principle, life force, vital essence, special nature, a material symbol of a life principle, source of emotions - the essential quality and vitality of a being or entity. Also used for a physical object, individual, ecosystem or social group in which this essence is located


sea, ocean, large lake

Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa

the Pacific Ocean


English, foreign, European, exotic - introduced from or originating in a foreign country; New Zealander of European descent - probably originally applied to English-speaking Europeans living in Aotearoa/ New Zealand


tribal saying, tribal motto, proverb (especially about a tribe), set form of words, formulaic expression, saying of the ancestors, figure of speech, motto, slogan - set sayings known for their economy of words and metaphor and encapsulating many Māori values and human characteristics


myth, ancient legend, story


younger generation, youth


chief (male or female), chieftain, chieftainess, master, mistress, boss, supervisor, employer, landlord, owner, proprietor - qualities of a leader is a concern for the integrity and prosperity of the people, the land, the language and other cultural treasures (for example, oratory and song poetry), and an aggressive and sustained response to outside forces that may threaten these


chieftainship, right to exercise authority, chiefly autonomy, chiefly authority, ownership, leadership of a social group, domain of the rangatira, noble birth, attributes of a chief


boundary, district, region, territory, area, border (of land)


council, tribal council, assembly, board, boardroom, iwi authority - assemblies called to discuss issues of concern to iwi or the community


children - normally used only in the plural


husband, male, man

Tangata whenua

local people, hosts, indigenous people - people born of the whenua, i.e. of the placenta and of the land where the people's ancestors have lived and where their placenta are buried


treasure, anything prized - applied to anything considered to be of value including socially or culturally valuable objects, resources, phenomenon, ideas and techniques


be sacred, prohibited, restricted, set apart, forbidden, under atua protection; restriction, prohibition - a supernatural condition. A person, place or thing is dedicated to an atua and is thus removed from the sphere of the profane and put into the sphere of the sacred. It is untouchable, no longer to be put to common use

Te reo Māori

Māori language

Te Tiriti o Waitangi

The Treaty of Waitangi


correct procedure, custom, habit, lore, method, manner, rule, way, code, meaning, plan, practice, convention, protocol - the customary system of values and practices that have developed over time and are deeply embedded in the social context

Tino rangatiratanga

self-determination, sovereignty, autonomy, self-government, domination, rule, control, power


ancestor, grandparent, grandfather, grandmother - singular form of tīpuna and the eastern dialect variation of tupuna


skilled person, chosen expert, priest, healer - a person chosen by the agent of an atua and the tribe as a leader in a particular field because of signs indicating talent for a particular vocation


ancestor, grandparent – singular form of tūpuna and the western dialect variation of tipuna


domicile, standing, place where one has the right to stand - place where one has rights of residence and belonging through kinship and whakapapa


spirit, soul - spirit of a person which exists beyond death. It is the non-physical spirit, distinct from the body and the mauri


wahine - woman, female, lady, wife; wāhine - women, females, ladies, wives – plural form of wahine; female, women, feminine




seminar, conference, forum, educational seminar; tribal knowledge, lore, learning - important traditional cultural, religious, historical, genealogical and philosophical knowledge; tertiary institution that caters for Māori learning needs - established under the Education Act 1990


oratory, oration, formal speech-making, address, speech - formal speeches usually made by men during a pohiri/pōwhiri and other gatherings


genealogy, genealogical table, lineage, descent - reciting whakapapa was, and is, an important skill and reflected the importance of genealogies in Māori society in terms of leadership, land and fishing rights, kinship and status. It is central to all Māori institutions. There are different terms for the types of whakapapa and the different ways of reciting them including: tāhū (recite a direct line of ancestry through only the senior line); whakamoe (recite a genealogy including males and their spouses); taotahi (recite genealogy in a single line of descent); hikohiko (recite genealogy in a selective way by not following a single line of descent); ure tārewa (male line of descent through the first-born male in each generation)


proverb, significant saying, formulaic saying, cryptic saying, aphorism. Like whakatauākī and pepeha they are essential ingredients in whaikōrero


extended family, family group, a familiar term of address to a number of people - the primary economic unit of traditional Māori society. In the modern context the term is sometimes used to include friends who may not have any kinship ties to other members


relationship, kinship, sense of family connection - a relationship through shared experiences and working together which provides people with a sense of belonging. It develops as a result of kinship rights and obligations, which also serve to strengthen each member of the kin group. It also extends to others to whom one develops a close familial, friendship or reciprocal relationship


land - often used in the plural; territory, domain; country, land, nation, state



[1]       The Impact of Research, MBIE position paper, October 2019, https://www.mbie.govt.nz/dmsdocument/6983-the-impact-of-research-position-paper-october-2019-pdf

Return to top

Timetable | Wātaka

2023 Timetable



Thursday, 23 March 2023

Online portal opens

Thursday, 18 May 2023

Online portal closes, 5pm

Thursday, 22 June 2023

Deadline for referee reports to be submitted, 5pm NZST

No later than 30 June 2023

Proposals & referee reports sent to panellists

Friday, 28 July 2023

Deadline for panellist’s scores to be submitted, 5pm

August 2023

Panel video-conferences

September 2023

Ratification of funding recommendations

October 2023 (TBC)

Fellows announced

Return to top

Assessment panels

Applications for James Cook Research Fellowships will be assessed in their particular categories by Assessment Panels, the members of which will represent a broad range of disciplines. They will receive each proposal and a chart of applicants and will be required to score each applicant in priority listing. The 2023 panel tables will be updated as panellists are being appointed.

2023 Panels

Health Sciences

Professor Chris Cunningham

Massey University

Professor Valery Feigin

Auckland University of Technology

Professor Beverley Lawton

Victoria University of Wellington

Distinguished Professor Ian Reid

The University of Auckland

Professor Christine Winterbourn

University of Otago

Engineering sciences and technologies

Professor Dale Carnegie

Victoria University of Wellington

Professor Alexei Drummond

The University of Auckland

Associate Professor Kristopher Kilian

University of New South Wales

Professor Kim Pickering

University of Waikato

Dr SR Uma

GNS Science

Social Sciences

Professor Deidre Brown

The University of Auckland

Professor David Conradson

University of Canterbury

Professor Hinematau McNeill

Auckland University of Technology

Professor Angela Wanhalla

University of Otago

Professor Tony Ward

Victoria University of Wellington



If you require further information about the James Cook Research Fellowships, please email us at james.cook@royalsociety.org.nz or phone (04) 470 5764.

Return to top