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Marsden Fund panels

Definitions of panels and details of panel members

There are ten discipline-based assessment panels which make funding recommendations to the Marsden Fund Council.  The panels are made up of researchers who are experts in their field. They are appointed by the Royal Society Te Apārangi after being recommended by the Fund Council and usually serve for a maximum of three years.

On this page:

Biomedical Sciences (BMS)

Research related to human health and disease in: physiology, pathology, pharmacology, molecular biology, genetics, cell biology, microbiology; neurobiology (including animals as a model species for humans); human genomics and related bioinformatics.


Associate Professor Julia Horsfield (Convenor) University of Otago 
Professor Winston Byblow University of Auckland
Dr Jacqui Keenan University of Otago
Dr Megan Maher La Trobe University
Dr Jonathan Marshall Massey University
Professor Robin McAllen University of Melbourne 
Associate Professor Wayne Patrick Victoria University of Wellington
Associate Professor Thomas Proft University of Auckland


Cellular, Molecular and Physiological Biology (CMP)

Studies related to understanding the activities that occur in cells and tissues, and their integration within living organisms across the biological, agricultural and veterinary and biochemical sciences. This includes: plant physiology; animal physiology; cell biology; plant and animal genetics; molecular biology and molecular genetics; functional genomics and related bioinformatics; microbiology excluding microbial ecology; animal and plant pathology.


Professor Richard Newcomb (Convenor) Plant & Food Research 
Dr Julie Dalziel AgResearch
Professor Renwick Dobson University of Canterbury
Dr Kevin Davies Plant & Food Research
Dr Helen Fitzsimons Massey University
Dr Peter Mace University of Otago
Associate Professor James Murphy Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, Australia
Professor Anthony Poole The University of Auckland


Earth Sciences and Astronomy (ESA)

Including: geology; geophysics; physical geography; oceanography; hydrology; meteorology; atmospheric science; earth sciences; astronomy and astrophysics; also cross-disciplinary topics which include substantial components in some of these areas.


Professor Richard Easther (Convenor) The University of Auckland 
Emeritus Professor Richard Arculus Australian National University
Dr Rebecca Carey University of Tasmania
Professor Warrick Couch
Australian Astronomical Observatory
Dr Daniel Carl Henare Hikuroa The University of Auckland
Professor Pat Langhorne University of Otago
Professor Cliff Law NIWA/University of Otago
Professor David Prior University of Otago
Associate Professor Mark Quigley University of Melbourne
Associate Professor Peyman Zawar-Reza University of Canterbury


Ecology, Evolution and Behaviour (EEB)

Studies related to the interrelationships between organisms and their environment, evolution and behaviour. This includes: animal, plant and microbial ecology; biogeography; biodiversity; phylogenetics; systematics and evolution; population biology and genetics; animal behaviour; physiological plant ecology; biostatistics and modelling. Note that proposals seeking to establish the molecular basis of processes or traits are better sent to CMP or BMS panels, unless they materially concern the evolution of those processes or traits.


Associate Professor Janet Wilmshurst (Convenor) Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research 
Professor Corey Bradshaw Flinders University
Professor Elissa Cameron University of Canterbury
Professor Craig Cary University of Waikato
Dr Vonda Cummings NIWA
Professor Peter Dearden University of Otago
Professor Phil Lester Victoria University of Wellington
Dr Nic Rawlence
University of Otago
Associate Professor Maren Wellenreuther Plant and Food Research
Dr David Whitehead Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research 


Economics and Human and Behavioural Sciences (EHB)

Including: economics; psychology (experimental, cognitive, neuro-); cognitive science; cognitive linguistics; archaeology; physical anthropology; business studies; commerce; management studies; marketing; communication science and demography.


Professor Jarrod Haar (Convenor) Auckland University of Technology
Professor Fiona Alpass Massey University 
Professor Ananish Chaudhuri  University of Auckland
Professor Randolph Grace University of Canterbury
Associate Professor Val Hooper Victoria University of Wellington
Professor Judith Littleton University of Auckland
Professor Gail Pacheco Auckland University of Technology 
Professor John Perrone University of Waikato
Professor Richard Walter University of Otago 


Engineering and Interdisciplinary Sciences (EIS)

Including: fundamentals of engineering (biomedical, bioprocessing, civil, chemical, electrical, electronic, environmental, materials, mechanical and robotics); and cross-disciplinary research relating to engineering.


Distinguished Professor Geoff Chase (Convenor) University of Canterbury 
Dr Alys Clark University of Auckland
Professor Haiping Du University of Wollongong
Professor Mike Duke University of Waikato
Dr John Vedamuthu Kennedy GNS 
Professor Peter Pivonka Queensland Institute of Technology
Professor Cather Simpson
University of Auckland
Professor Mathieu Sellier University of Canterbury
Associate Professor Tim Woodfield University of Otago


Humanities (HUM)

Including: English; languages; history; religion; philosophy; law; classics; linguistics; literature; cultural studies; media studies; art history; film.


Professor Cynthia White (Convenor) Massey University
Associate Professor Alex Calder University of Auckland
Professor Paul Clark University of Auckland
Professor Catharine Coleborne The University of Newcastle
Associate Professor Vijay Devadas Auckland University of Technology
Professor Jon Hall University of Otago
Professor Jeanette Kennett Macquarie University
Professor Jacinta Ruru University of Otago


Mathematical and Information Sciences (MIS)

Including: pure mathematics; applied mathematics; statistics; operations research; logic; computer science; information systems; and software engineering.


Professor Gillian Dobbie (Convenor) University of Auckland
Professor Andrew Bassom University of Tasmania
Professor Jörg Frauendiener​  University of Otago
Associate Professor Igor Klep University of Auckland
Associate Professor Ivy Liu Victoria University of Wellington
Professor Stephen MacDonell Auckland University of Technology / University of Otago
Professor Alistair Moffat University of Melbourne
Professor Charles Semple University of Canterbury
Professor Scott Sisson University of New South Wales


Physics, Chemistry and Biochemistry (PCB)

Including: materials science; physics; chemistry; biophysics, chemical biology and biochemistry.


Professor Penny Brothers (Convenor) University of Auckland
Professor Elisabetta Barberio University of Melbourne
Associate Professor David Barker University of Auckland
Associate Professor Nigel Lucas University of Otago
Dr Carla Meledandri University of Otago 
Professor Emily Parker Victoria University of Wellington
Professor Halina Rubinsztein-Dunlop University of Queensland 
Dr Harald Schwefel University of Otago
Professor Rachel Webster University of Melbourne


Social Sciences (SOC)

Including: sociology; Māori studies; indigenous studies; sociology; social, developmental, organisational, community and health psychology; social, cultural and human geography; social anthropology; education; urban design and environmental studies; public health; nursing; public policy; political science; socio-linguistics; architecture.


Distinguished Professor Paul Spoonley (Convenor) Massey University
Associate Professor David Capie Victoria University of Wellington
Professor Samuel Charlton University of Waikato
Dr April Henderson Victoria University of Wellington
Professor Robyn Longhurst University of Waikato
Associate Professor Ruth McManus University of Canterbury
Associate Professor Gareth Treharne University of Otago 
Associate Professor Melinda Webber  University of Auckland 


Social Sciences Fast-Start Panel

Because of the large numbers of applications to the Social Sciences panel in previous years, preliminary Fast-Start SOC proposals will be assessed by a second panel. Proposals invited to the full application round will be assessed along with the Standard proposals by the full Social Sciences panel.


Associate Professor Rachel Zajac (Convenor) University of Otago
Dr Allen Bartley University of Auckland
Associate Professor Bethan Greener Massey University
Professor Lynda Johnston University of Waikato
Professor Poia Rewi University of Otago
Associate Professor Tamasailau Suaalii University of Auckland


Potential Panellists

The Marsden Fund secretariat at the Royal Society Te Apārangi maintains a list of potential panellists. If individuals wish to signal their availability to serve on a Marsden Fund Panel in 2019 or beyond, they should contact Dr Rachel Averill at the Royal Society Te Apārangi with their contact details, affiliation, a clear preference for which panel they would be suitable for, and ideally a link to their institutional web page.