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Division of Sciences news

Botany’s Team Motany celebrates a double Marsden success

Thursday, 14 November 2019 3:33pm

Head of Botany Associate Professor David Orlovich still has a smile on his face after receiving the good news of his team’s recent Marsden Fund grant success.

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Zoologists demand better action for 2019 “Bird of the Year”

Monday, 11 November 2019 9:47am

University of Otago Zoologists reactions to Hoiho, New Zealand’s endemic and yellow-eyed penguin winning Bird of the Year are bittersweet, and call for better management from agencies tasked with their conservation.

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Taking science communication to school

Thursday, 7 November 2019 10:06am

Science engagement at school continues to decline despite global issues being increasingly informed by scientific research and a growing need for more science-related careers.

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PhD Scholarships

Thursday, 31 October 2019 10:42am

We are providing three PhD scholarships and fees to students who are interested in looking at solutions to climate change problems for Māori communities. Students would join in a multi-disciplinary team of academics, private sector and Crown Research Institute individuals, along with recent Māori social science graduates from Otago University.

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Otago scientists’ discovery leads to greater understanding of Alzheimer’s disease

Wednesday, 23 October 2019 10:00am

Otago scientists have made an important discovery in understanding the role a particular protein plays to impair memory in Alzheimer’s disease, which could lead to more effective treatment in future.

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World-class Clean Lab opens at Otago

Tuesday, 22 October 2019 9:04am

A world-class research facility producing filtered air 100,000 times cleaner than outside air, is the newest addition to the University of Otago’s Mellor Laboratory.

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Otago scientists win national outstanding research awards

Friday, 18 October 2019 9:37am

Two University of Otago scientists have received prestigious awards at the New Zealand Research Honours gala this evening.

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Otago wins at Zoomtopia Innovation Awards

Thursday, 17 October 2019 1:20pm

Otago has won a competition with its videoconference provider, Zoom, for its innovative use of videoconferencing.

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Otago researchers awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowships

Tuesday, 15 October 2019 2:55pm

Two University of Otago researchers have been awarded Rutherford Discovery Fellowships and will receive NZD$800,000 each over five years.

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BEATS Research Team receives 2019 Otago Research Group Award

Tuesday, 15 October 2019 11:08am

A research group that is actively encouraging active transport to school by adolescents and making a contribution towards New Zealand’s growing issue of insufficient physical activity, has received the University of Otago 2019 Research Group Award.

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Chemistry teacher receives National Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award

Wednesday, 9 October 2019 9:02am

The exemplary teaching skills of Dr David McMorran have been recognised with a National Tertiary Teaching Excellence Award by Ako Aotearoa.

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Estimating calorie content not clear-cut for all – Otago study

Wednesday, 2 October 2019 9:30am

We make food decisions several times a day – from what time we eat to how much – but a new University of Otago study has found we are not very good at judging the energy-density of what we consume.

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Centre for Science Communication welcomes new head of filmmaking

Tuesday, 1 October 2019 9:51am

Sharing the narrative of the ocean is a key driver for Dr Gianna Savoie who has recently started in her new role as the head of filmmaking at Otago’s Centre for Science Communication.

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Otago Study identifies psychology of attraction to religious deities and super-heroes

Monday, 30 September 2019 11:29am

A new psychological study published by University of Otago researchers has addressed centuries-old questions about how and why supernatural beings are worshipped.

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Dr Brigid Inder inducted to PE Wall of Fame

Friday, 27 September 2019 1:33pm

Dr Brigid Inder, OBE, a recognised global expert in women’s rights and gender justice issues, has this week been inducted to the School of Physical Education, Sport and Exercise Sciences Wall of Fame.

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Otago Global Health Institute (OGHI) Seed Grants: 2020 Applications now open

Tuesday, 24 September 2019 3:36pm

Applications for the OGHI 2020 Seed Grants are now open.

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National research funding for Centre researcher

Thursday, 19 September 2019 9:11am

Professor Merata Kawharu (Ngāti Whatua, Ngāpuhi) from the Centre for Sustainability, has been awarded NZ$7,248,016 over five years for an initiative aimed at empowering Māori communities to respond to climate change.This innovative research project pioneers the development of marae-based and marae-led platforms and processes to help reduce carbon emissions in the community.

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Time for law review on GM crops – leading academics argue

Wednesday, 18 September 2019 10:40am

A group of New Zealand’s leading plant scientists are calling for a law change, allowing them to use modern plant breeding technologies, which could be highly beneficial to New Zealand and the world.

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Seminar: Postcolonial Tanzania, the Dar School and Afro-Futurist Geopolitical Imaginations

Wednesday, 18 September 2019 12:01pm

Seminar: Postcolonial Tanzania, the Dar School and Afro-Futurist Geopolitical Imaginations

Prof Joanne Sharp
University of St Andrews, UK

Date: Wednesday 25 September, 4PM
Venue: Richardson 5N4


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Otago scientists awarded NZ$38.5 million in largest national research grants

Tuesday, 17 September 2019 10:28am

University of Otago scientists have been awarded almost NZ$38.5 million from the Government’s Endeavour Fund to tackle major issues from climate change to antimicrobial resistance.

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Director of The Dunedin Study recognised with Distinguished Research Medal

Friday, 13 September 2019 12:23pm

Having a clear goal to make people’s lives better has helped earn Professor Richie Poulton Otago's prestigious Distinguished Research Medal for 2019.

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Director of The Dunedin Study recognised with Distinguished Research Medal

Friday, 13 September 2019 11:03am

Having a clear goal to make people’s lives better has helped earn Professor Richie Poulton the prestigious Otago 2019 Distinguished Research Medal Award.

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Summer Scholarships available

Friday, 13 September 2019 11:49am

Are you planning on coming back to university next year? Would you like to carry out an interesting 10-week research project over the holidays? The Centre for Sustainability has several Summer Scholarships for the summer break. 

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Study finds pesticides banned in Europe present in New Zealand streams

Tuesday, 3 September 2019 11:05am

A University of Otago study investigating chemicals in New Zealand waterways has found evidence of pesticides banned in some European countries present in agricultural streams.

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Otago student People’s Choice winner at national 3MT finals

Friday, 23 August 2019 1:28pm

Auckland University of Technology (AUT) master’s student Livvy Mitchell is this year’s 3MT NZ Inter-University Master’s champion, but Otago’s Jonah Belk was the audience’s favourite.

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Driver behaviour not altered by roadside memorials - Otago study

Friday, 23 August 2019 10:34am

Roadside memorials may be controversial, but a University of Otago study has found they have very little impact on driver behaviour or perception of road safety.

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PhD Scholarship available in the area of tourism, emergency management and rural disaster resilience.

Thursday, 22 August 2019 2:41pm

Inviting applications for a three year PhD Scholarship at the Centre for Sustainability.We seek an applied, interdisciplinary research candidate with exceptional communication skills, and prior research knowledge and practical experience of the tourism sector to join our dynamic research team in New Zealand.

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Otago hosting 10th International Penguin Conference

Tuesday, 20 August 2019 9:47pm

Just over three decades have passed since the first International Penguin Conference was hosted in Dunedin.  This weekend the 10th iteration will begin at the University.

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Otago hosting 10th International Penguin Conference

Tuesday, 20 August 2019 4:50pm

The biology, ecology, heath and behaviour of penguins will be discussed by the world’s leading researchers at a conference hosted by the University of Otago this month.

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Otago research shows ski passes still worthwhile

Monday, 19 August 2019 2:16pm

The recent arrival of snow across the country brought relief to ski fields, but as we enter the latter half of the ski season, is this lack of snow a sign of things to come? Should Kiwis continue buying annual ski passes?

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Scarfie twins health and wellness social media influencers

Thursday, 15 August 2019 2:53pm

Emily and Sophie Martin are Scarfies with a dedication to balance.

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Cultural journey complements Fulbright opportunity

Thursday, 8 August 2019 7:00pm

A tauira Māori from the University of Otago who has complemented her academic journey by reconnecting with her culture is hoping her Fulbright Scholarship will inspire others to pursue international excellence.

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Otago student awarded prestigious Energy scholarship

Thursday, 8 August 2019 4:38pm

Energy Management student Emily Jiang has been awarded a $5,000 undergraduate scholarship from Energy Education Trust NZ.

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New Otago programme offers fresh look at agriculture

Thursday, 25 July 2019 12:51pm

Developing future leaders in agriculture who drive the industry forward is the kaupapa of a new major available within Applied Sciences at the University of Otago.

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Films by five female film-makers premiering this weekend

Tuesday, 23 July 2019 10:27pm

The next generation of wildlife and science film-makers are making their debut in Dunedin this weekend.

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Connection to country impacts mental health – Otago study shows

Tuesday, 16 July 2019 10:31am

Whether you feel a strong attachment to New Zealand’s Māori culture, majestic landscapes, or the All Blacks, an Otago study has found a sense of belonging to the country is positively related to mental health.

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Coastal erosion challenges councils and communities

Thursday, 11 July 2019 9:55am

New research shows a “business as usual” approach will not work for New Zealand’s regional councils, and over a quarter of our local councils, who are facing extreme exposure to climate hazards like coastal erosion, flooding and rising groundwater levels.

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Reducing power costs for farmers

Wednesday, 10 July 2019 10:02am

Electricity costs are a significant burden for many farms, especially those that run extensive irrigation and dairying operations.

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Otago study calls for moral as well as social values to be considered in rugby selection process

Tuesday, 9 July 2019 11:35am

According to Sir Graham Henry “better people make better All Blacks”, but against what standards are the characters of New Zealand rugby players being judged?

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Scientists discover processes to lower methane emissions from animals

Tuesday, 2 July 2019 11:04am

University of Otago scientists are part of an international research collaboration which has made an important discovery in the quest to lower global agricultural methane emissions.