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Division of Sciences news

Otago’s Mountain Research Centre explores snow, ice and glaciers in our changing climate

Wednesday, 23 June 2021 11:18am

Tackling the uncertainty of how changes to snow and ice cover will impact New Zealand’s water resources is one of the goals of University of Otago’s Mountain Research Centre (MRC).

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Dam strength determined by balanced rocks

Tuesday, 15 June 2021 10:49am

Balanced rocks, poised in position for 24,000 years, have been used to assess the current seismic integrity of the Clyde Dam in a University of Otago-led study.

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Otago sports-related research leads NZ Universities in international recognition 

Monday, 14 June 2021 9:44am

Investigating the connections between sport and wider society has helped the University of Otago maintain its success in the sports-related category of the 2021 QS World Rankings.

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Otago takes lead on Policy Guidance for Ocean Acidification

Wednesday, 9 June 2021 11:24am

'A Policymaker’s Handbook for Addressing the Impacts of Ocean Acidification' has recently been launched.

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Sisters in Science

Thursday, 3 June 2021 9:43am

Between them, Dr Cathy Cole and Dr Rosie Cole have clocked up three research expeditions to polar seas, forty ascents of Mount Tongariro, thousands of hours in a Scottish coral culture lab, and organised a ton of wax to mimic an eruption.

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Family connections lead to study of singing’s strong benefits

Wednesday, 2 June 2021 3:33pm

To sing is to live well. That is the simple message of a study led by an Otago Department of Psychology researcher and recently published in Journal of Health Psychology.

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Looking at future of Antarctic through an Indigenous Māori lens

Thursday, 27 May 2021 4:29pm

It is time for the management and conservation of the Antarctic to begin focusing on responsibility, rather than rights, through an Indigenous Māori framework, a University of Otago academic argues.

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Otago study aids understanding of invisible but mighty particles

Wednesday, 26 May 2021 12:15pm

Tiny charged electrons and protons which can damage satellites and alter the ozone have revealed some of their mysteries to University of Otago scientists.

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Otago study helps explain how religious beliefs are formed

Monday, 24 May 2021 10:02am

Feeling anxious can direct our attention and memory toward supernatural beings such as gods, a University of Otago study has found.

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No cause for alarm about graduate students’ mental health

Friday, 21 May 2021 12:13pm

Talk of a graduate student mental health crisis is abundant in academic and popular media, but a University of Otago study has found no evidence of one in New Zealand.

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Earthquake creates ecological opportunity

Thursday, 20 May 2021 10:47am

A University of Otago study has revealed how earthquake upheaval has affected New Zealand’s coastal species.

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Research grant engages Pasifika in climate change storytelling

Thursday, 20 May 2021 10:24am

Engaging Pasifika school students in conversations about climate change and supporting them to tell their own stories is the kaupapa of an Otago research grant pilot-project led by Dr Gianna Savoie.

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Abortion opposition related to beliefs about fetal pain perception

Thursday, 13 May 2021 10:07am

A person’s stance on abortion is linked to their, often inaccurate, belief about when a fetus can feel pain, a University of Otago study has found.

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Painful road to achieving Master’s with Distinction

Tuesday, 11 May 2021 10:29am

Brittany Jones was the first person to graduate with a Master of Applied Science with Distinction in Quantitative Genetics.

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Overcoming challenges on path to higher learning

Thursday, 6 May 2021 4:07pm

Many people have dreamt of their teacher asking a question they don’t know the answer to, but what about not being able to hear the question in the first place?

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Fossil fascination connects Kaikoura’s coasts to the University of Oxford

Thursday, 6 May 2021 9:17am

Lachie Scarsbrook’s graduation on Saturday marks an important milestone in his academic journey.

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Otago appoints inaugural Professor of Agricultural Innovation

Wednesday, 5 May 2021 10:08am

The University of Otago has appointed Dr Craig Bunt (Te Ātiawa) as the inaugural Professor of Otago’s Agricultural Innovation programme which commenced in 2019.  

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Sciences Divisional Office on the move

Monday, 19 April 2021 7:59am

A new space for the Sciences Divisional Office is being created in the heart of the Science Precinct this year.

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Research finds baby food pouches are sweet and low in iron

Thursday, 15 April 2021 2:21pm

Research out of the University of Otago’s Department of Human Nutrition has examined the nutritional quality of baby food pouches found in most supermarkets.

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PM’s Emerging Scientist Prize a chance to highlight effects of climate change on marine environment

Thursday, 15 April 2021 9:38am

Winner of the 2020 Prime Minister’s MacDiarmid Emerging Scientist Prize, Dr Christopher Cornwall, says it is “exactly the right time” to highlight the type of research he is doing.

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Response to the Climate Change Commission

Thursday, 8 April 2021 4:43pm

The Centre for Sustainability recently submitted a response to the Climate Change Commission’s Consultation document, the combined submission is a research-informed perspective on the CCC’s draft Advice.

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Tuatara eggs hatch for Easter at Orokonui Ecosanctuary

Thursday, 1 April 2021 4:35pm

A rare sighting of five new hatchling tuatara emerging at Orokonui Ecosantuary has been caught on camera by University of Otago researchers who were undertaking a routine inspection of the nest at the time.

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World Rugby, New Zealand Rugby, the University of Otago and Prevent Biometrics to undertake ground-breaking community rugby head impact study

Thursday, 1 April 2021 4:43pm

Underscoring the continued commitment to furthering head injury prevention in rugby, World Rugby is partnering with New Zealand Rugby, the University of Otago and Prevent Biometrics to undertake a ground-breaking study to understand the nature and frequency of head impacts in men’s and women’s community and age-grade rugby.

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Mathematics and Statistics welcomes new Head of Department 

Monday, 15 March 2021 8:59am

Associate Professor Sarah Wakes describes moving into her new role as Head of Department of Mathematics and Statistics as coming full circle.

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Top of cliff approach to suicide prevention

Wednesday, 10 March 2021 10:20am

By looking at suicide prevention from a different perspective, University of Otago researchers hope to improve identification and support for people in suicidal crisis.

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Psychology welcomes two new Māori academic staff

Thursday, 4 March 2021 7:25am

Two new Māori academics have been warmly welcomed to the Department of Psychology.

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Tongan student realises dream to enter Clinical Psychology programme

Wednesday, 24 February 2021 11:43am

Tongan postgraduate student Jordan Quensell is celebrating reaching his ambitious goal of entry into the competitive postgraduate Clinical Psychology programme.

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Power restructure needed to enhance Indigenous engagement in planning, research shows

Tuesday, 23 February 2021 11:16am

Impact assessments have a patchy history of effectively engaging Indigenous communities and providing positive outcomes for their aspirations – University of Otago research is providing a starting point to improve the situation.

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Worker bees smell trouble in the colonies

Monday, 22 February 2021 10:19am

University of Otago research reveals bees’ sense of smell gives them a fighting chance against the deadly parasitic mite, Varroa destructor.

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Dunedin Study data provides evidence that youth mental health issues impact adult physical health

Thursday, 18 February 2021 9:11am

A new study by researchers from Otago and Duke Universities makes the case that mental health struggles in early life can lead to poorer physical health and advanced aging in adulthood.

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Division of Sciences grows Pacific connections

Thursday, 18 February 2021 8:37am

The Division of Sciences recently signed of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with local provider Pacific Trust Otago (PTO).

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Germany-New Zealand Green Hydrogen Alliance Passes First Hurdle

Wednesday, 17 February 2021 10:04am

A University of Otago researcher is co-leading a new international alliance with Germany to explore green hydrogen technologies in New Zealand.

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Otago study examines attitudes toward climate change risk

Thursday, 4 February 2021 11:39am

A University of Otago study explored factors which influence Americans’ levels of concern over climate change, providing discussion on how those factors could impact mitigation efforts.

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Dodd-Walls Centre gets green light for another eight years

Thursday, 4 February 2021 4:28pm

The Dodd-Walls Centre for Photonic and Quantum Technologies (DWC), Te Whai Ao, will receive a further $36.7m to continue operations.

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Staff member celebrates 45 years at Otago

Wednesday, 3 February 2021 5:02pm

Client Services Administrator Lyn Tyrrell started at the University of Otago in 1976.

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Remembering Professor Phil Bishop

Monday, 1 February 2021 2:39pm

Professor Phil Bishop was “quite protective” of his frogs during the shoot, recalls the photographer of this portrait taken for his 2014 Inaugural Professorial Lecture.

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Study examines keys to success for contact tracing

Friday, 22 January 2021 10:41am

Research examining the effectiveness of contact tracing systems in the hospitality sector has identified factors that influence buy-in from the public.

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Penned release of green geckos has potential to help preserve threatened native species

Thursday, 14 January 2021 11:13am

University of Otago researchers have added another piece to the puzzle about how best to translocate New Zealand lizards for conservation purposes – confine them.

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School of Surveying contributes to Everest’s new height

Thursday, 14 January 2021 9:55am

A School of Surveying Te Kura Kairūri academic has been instrumental in supporting Nepalese surveyors to measure Mount Everest for the first time.