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The University of Otago Geology Department has an active staff and student economic geology research program. We apply a range of techniques from field mapping to high resolution imaging by scanning electron microscopy to stable and radiogenic isotope geochemistry to interpret how and why deposits have formed. Environmental aspects are covered too, especially around the processing sites of historic mines. We collaborate closely with mining companies, such as Oceana Gold, and crown research institutes, such as GNS Science.

Economic Geology research

We have extensive webpages detailing some of our economic Geology research:

This research has culminated in the publication of these two books:


Doug MacKenzie smDr Doug MacKenzie

BSc(Toronto),    MSc PhD(Otago) MAusIMM CP(GEO)

  • Orogenic Au
  • Structural controls on mineralization
  • Geophysical techniques
  • Mineralisation in Otago and Westland

James Scott smProfessor James Scott

PhD (Otago)

  • Geochemistry of Au-W deposits
  • Fluid flow and alteration
  • Skarns
  • Mineralisation in Otago and Westland

Marco Brenna smDr Marco Brenna

BSc (University of Western Australia), PhD (Massey)

  • Rare earth elements
  • Igneous-related mineralization

Dave Craw smProfessor Dave Craw

BSc PhD(Otago) MSc(Calgary) FRSNZ

  • Orogenic Au models
  • Placer deposits

Current and recent students

  • Stephanie Junior - Analyzing gold in the mantle, petrological and geochemical studies of New Zealand peridotites. (PhD)
  • Gemma Kerr - Mineralogical and geochemical  controls on mine water discharge composition.
  • Alastair King - An investigation into the paragenesis and structure of high-grade, high  angle, gold veins at Macraes in the Hyde Macraes Shear Zone
  • Tom Ritchie – Garnet sands of Westland (MSc)
  • Bryce Robinson - Mineralogy, structure, alteration footprints and paragenesis of the  Waipori and surrounding Lake Mahinerangi gold deposits, Otago, New  Zealand. (MSc)
  • Emma Scanlan - Tungsten geochemistry of the Glenorchy deposits, Otago (MSc)
  • Fraser Shand - Cretaceous porphyry-style and skarnifications mineralization in the Berlins Porphyry, Westland (MSc)
  • Stephie Tay -  Environmental Geochemistry of Historic Mine Tailings at Alexander Mine, Reefton (BSc(Hons))
  • Victoria Wilson – W mineralization and paragenesis of the Bendigo deposits in Central Otago, NZ (BSc(Hons))
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