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Fellow and Honorary Fellow Election Process

Table of Contents

Nomination

Call for nominations

There is a Call for Nominations for Fellows and Honorary Fellows in January each year, with a closing date usually in late June.

The 2020 round is now closed.

 

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Nomination routes

The Royal Society of New Zealand Act states that the Academy Executive Committee may from time to time, in accordance with the Academy Bylaws, elect as a Fellow any person who in the opinion of the Academy Executive Committee has achieved distinction in research or the advancement of science, technology, or the humanities.

The nature of the nomination may be one of two main routes:

  • Advancement of the field by intellectual endeavour (with or without research content)
  • Distinction in research (with or without impact)

Leadership and public service will continue to be recognised by being honoured by becoming a Companion of the Society rather than through Academy Fellowship.

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Who can nominate

Who can nominate Fellows?

Each nomination must be made by two eligible persons, those eligible being Fellows, senior officer-bearers of Branches and Constituent Organisations, people holding Fellowships of major national or international professional bodies and learned society organisations, and those holding research or executive leadership roles in research organisations.

Who can nominate Honorary Fellows?

Nominations for Honorary Fellowship may be made by groups of three or more Fellows, or by two Fellows and one other person who shall be a senior office-bearer of a Constituent Organisation, Regional Constituent Organisation or other research organisations.

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How nominations are made

Nominations are submitted via an online portal. 

If you would like to submit a nomination, please email academy@royalsociety.org.nz to request a URL to access the Fellowship portal.

Nominations for Fellowship remain valid for 5 years, after which there is a 3-year stand-down period before a person may be re-nominated. Nevertheless, the Academy Executive Committee may allow a nominee or group of nominees to be re-nominated earlier in exceptional circumstances, or if in the Committee's opinion, such waiver could assist in increasing the diversity of the Fellowship. However, excellence is the prime criterion.

Nominations for Honorary Fellowship remain valid for 2 years, after which there is also a 3-year stand-down period before a person may be re-nominated. 

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What information should a nomination contain?

All the information listed below needs to be addressed and uploaded onto the portal.

Research cases                                  

A summary of the nomination in plain English (max. 125 words)

Describe the contribution to new knowledge   (max. 250 words)         

A Nomination Statement that explains the nominee’s significant achievements and contributions the demonstrate distinction in research, and impacts (max. 500 words).                     

List six pieces of evidence to support the nomination (e.g. publications, commercilisation or industrial impact, patents, open data sets, policy outcomes, public engagement, methodological improvements etc...)             

Provide names of two referees                 

Provide a short research CV with selected publications (6 pages Max)                                  

Advancement cases

A summary of the nomination in plain English (max. 125 words)

Describe the nature of the nominee's intellectual achievement (e.g. through creativity, ingenuity or synthesis of solutions) (max. 250 words)

A Nomination Statement that explains the nominee’s significant achievements and contributions in the Advancement of their field of science, technology or the humanities (max. 500 words).

List six pieces of evidence to support the nomination (e.g. publications, commercilisation or industrial impact, patents, open data sets, policy outcomes, public engagement, methodological improvements etc...)

Provide names of two referees

Provide short CV (6 pages max)

 

 

 

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Requirements for Fellow nomination

Election as a Fellow requires that the nominee:

  •  is a citizen or permanent resident of New Zealand; and
  •  has been a New Zealand resident for at least three years during his or her career; and
  • normally spends at least six months in New Zealand each year.

 

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Requirements for Honorary Fellow nomination

Election as an Honorary Fellow requires that the nominee:

  1. Is not normally resident in New Zealand.
  2. Has demonstrated a level of distinction in research that exceeds the minimum level required to be elected a Fellow of the Society, this being exemplified through:
    1. Publication and other scholarly outputs,
    2. Impact of the research or scholarly outputs.
  3. A significant association with the New Zealand research and scholarly community, exemplified through meeting many or all of the following indicators:
    1. Demonstrated leadership in the development and ongoing management of major research programmes, involving New Zealand researchers, funded at least in part by New Zealand funding sources,
    2. Active medium to long term engagement, typically no less than 10 years, in collaborative research programmes, including personally conducting some of the work in New Zealand,
    3. Medium to long term participation as a visiting Fellow in New Zealand research programmes, including conducting some of the work in New Zealand,
    4. Providing ongoing opportunities and support for New Zealand-based researchers to visit and work on programmes in the candidate’s own place of work,
    5. Obtaining funding from international sources that is either applied to work to be undertaken in New Zealand or to be undertaken elsewhere by New Zealanders who intend to return to New Zealand after completion of the work.
    6. Extensive publication with New Zealand co-author
  4. The requirements under Criterion 3 may be waived by the Academy Executive Committee for nominees who are New Zealand citizens or New Zealand-born if the nominee has received recognition outside New Zealand that demonstrates a level of distinction in research far exceeding that set out in Criterion 2

Notes

  1. Nominees who are resident in New Zealand for more than six months/year are ineligible for Honorary Fellow and should apply for election to Fellow.
  1. Nominators should provide a nomination statement, addressing the criteria for Fellow in one of the four domains (humanities; social sciences; science; technology, applied science and engineering).
  1. Service on international advisory boards or panels, occasional short duration visits to discuss collaborative work attendance at New Zealand-based conferences and ongoing peer review activities in support of New Zealand research funding agencies, whilst meritorious are in themselves not sufficient to meet criterion 3 above.

 

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Evaluation

Evaluation Panels

All new and current nominations are sent to the appropriate Fellowship Evaluation Panels for assessment and shortlisting.

There are six evaluation panels covering broad fields:

  • Biological and Environmental Sciences
  • Health and Medical Sciences
  • Humanities
  • Physical, Earth and Mathematical Sciences
  • Social and Behavioural Sciences
  • Technology, Applied Sciences and Engineering

Each panel will have seven or more panellists, and this may include members out of field if needed to ensure panel diversity.

Panellists are appointed for 5 years. For nominations that do not easily fit into one of the discipline-based evaluation panels, the Strategic Evaluation Panel will assess these nominations.

Where a nominator is unsure of the most appropriate panel, advice may be taken from the Academy Executive Officer, or the more appropriate panel should be selected.

 

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Criteria and impact factors

In evaluating a nomination for election as a Fellow, the following criteria and impact factors will be considered. 

Criteria for Advancement cases

For each discipline the relevant outcomes resulting from the nominee’s intellectual endeavour will vary. Relevant criteria for demonstrating outcomes are drawn from the following list:

  • Successful promulgation or uptake of new products, processes, IP, or services based on the innovation/new knowledge;
  • Major changes in relevant public policy and/or government investment or operational strategy, for example in conservation, education, emergency management, environmental protection, health, justice, or social policy;
  • Major cultural or social change within communities of significant size;
  • Major changes to practice in a professional community, at least at a national level;
  • Major environmental change.

It is expected that these criteria can be evidenced in a variety of ways.

For Māori candidates, community engagement throughout the work programme will often be evident.

In considering ‘Advancement’ cases with research content, the outcomes of the intellectual endeavour are the primary consideration with the research content being seen as supplementary evidence.

Criteria for Distinction in Research cases

Humanities

(a) intellect; scholarship; international reputation; and peer recognition; depth of knowledge; and originality of thinking.

(b) development and progression of scholarly programme; and, in appropriate cases, the impact of the research.

It is expected that these criteria will be demonstrated via outstanding publications such as monographs, articles, and chapters in books. In appropriate instances publications may be supported by creative outputs of equivalent standing and investigative nature.

Science

(a) intellect; scholarship; international reputation; and peer recognition;

(b) development and progression of research programme; contribution to the field; and, in appropriate cases, the impact of the research.

It is expected that these criteria will be met in large part by outstanding publications, but may be supported by evidence of the impact of the research.

Social sciences

(a) intellect; scholarship; international reputation; and peer recognition

(b) development and progression of research programme; and, in appropriate cases, impact of the research.

It is expected that these criteria will be demonstrated via outstanding publications which may include commissioned investigative reports, but may be supported by peer-recognition and end-user recognition (such recognition normally being wider than solely at a national level).

Technology, Applied Sciences & Engineering

(a) intellect; scholarship; international reputation; and peer recognition;

(b) intellectual achievement; innovation; and an ability to creatively synthesise and critically interpret knowledge in a way that has impact on the field.

It is expected that these criteria will be demonstrated via a combination of publications (which may include commissioned investigative reports), intellectual property creation, evidence of the importance of the research, peer- recognition and end-user recognition (such recognition normally being wider than solely at a national level).

 

 

Relevant impact factors for research cases

In considering ‘Distinction in Research’ cases with impact, the research is the primary consideration with the impact being seen as supplementary evidence. The relevant impact factors among the following list may vary:

  • Successful promulgation or uptake of new products, processes, IP, or services based on the research.
  • Major changes in relevant public policy and/or government investment or operational strategy, for example in conservation, education, emergency management, environmental protection, health, justice, or social policy;
  • Development of new methods, concepts and theory that have advanced research practice, or professional community practice, at least at a national level in the relevant discipline;
  • Significant changes in the way bodies of knowledge are understood, organised and used (e.g. as a result of challenging previous conventional wisdom);
  • Lasting impact of citation;
  • Significantly increased investment in the research programme over an extended period of time by potential technology transfer partners or end-users;

 For Māori candidates, impact and advancement of Mātauranga Māori will normally be relevant considerations.

 

 

 

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Highly recommended nominees

Once the Evaluation Panels prepare an initial short list of nominations, reports from two named referees are requested for consideration. After consideration of the references, the Evaluation Panels decide on a group of highly recommended unranked nominees to go forward for consideration for Fellowship. For each of these nominees, up to five referees, independent of the nomination, are also identified.

The number of highly recommended nominees for Honorary Fellowship is not restricted in any one year but independent references are sought for those highly recommended by the discipline-based panels.

Nominations, along with the named and independent referees’ reports that have been obtained, are then forwarded to the Fellowship Selection Committee.

The Panels provide the Fellowship Selection Committee with a supporting statement for each highly recommended nominee.

A Strategic Evaluation Panel also considers nominations from under-represented groups that are also seen by the Evaluation Panels. The Strategic Evaluation Panel may also highly recommend candidates it considers would be credible Fellows for consideration by the Fellowship Selection Committee.

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Election

Fellowship Selection Committee

  • The Fellowship Selection Committee, which includes two members from each of the Evaluation Panels, and all members of the Strategic Evaluation Panel, meets to discuss the highly recommended candidates from all six Evaluation Panels, and from the Strategic Evaluation Panel.
  • Nominees are selected on individual merit alone and there is no quota allocation between the different disciplines/fields and geographical areas.
  • The number of new Fellows to be elected each year is decided by the Academy Executive Committee, directly following the previous election.
  • The decision of the Fellowship Selection Committee is then passed to the Academy Executive Committee for approval.
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