Sandpits can develop cross-disciplinary projects, but funders need to be as open-minded as researchers by Maxwell, Benneworth, and Siefkes

The “sandpit” method of generating cross-disciplinary research projects is gaining ground as a way to encourage innovation and creativity in research design. A sandpit is an event where academics and industry professionals from different disciplines, institutions, and places come together for three to five days with a view to creating new projects around a given theme. As a method it can indeed spark new… Read more

Pasifika Researcher Article of the Week: Pasifika Students: What Supports them to become better readers? by Leali’ie’e Tofilau Tufulasi Taleni

The changing ethnic population of New Zealand schools challenges educators to respond proactively in reviewing how students from minority groups develop effective literacy skills. Our (the authors’) joint theoretical beliefs are firmly grounded in socio-cultural views wherein children actively construct their own learning in authentic contexts that are shaped by social and cultural influences. For… Read more

Māori Researcher Article of the Week: Te whai mātauranga: he taonga mō te tangata kotahi pea, mō te iwi katoa rānei? Education: A Private Commodity, or a Public Good? by Georgina Stewart

It is now 30 years since the appearance of New Zealand Treasury (Government management: brief to the incoming government, vol 2, education Issues, New Zealand Government, Wellington, 1987), a key text that marked the start of a new era of education policy in Aotearoa-New Zealand. In his review of this Treasury text, Professor Grace (Br J Educ Stud 37(3):207–221, 1989) commented in some detail on what he termed… Read more

National Science Challenge 11 Building Better Homes, Towns, and Cities Research Article of the Week: An Alternative Means to Generate Urban Codes: An Instrument for Urban Design by Chowdhury and Schnabel

This study seeks to develop a methodology to generate urban codes to achieve the desired configuration for neighbourhoods. Urban codes refer to the embedded quality of urban forms which either evolved by itself or is guided by rules & regulations. The novel instrument proposed in this paper brings together city level and local neighbourhood data to aid participatory decision-making in urban design. We utilise… Read more

Book Review: The Value of Everything: Making and Taking in the Global Economy by Mariana Mazzucato

Looking at the things around you, do you think they have some value? If the answer is yes, is it simply because they have a price in the market? If the answer is still yes, then The Value of Everything: Making and Taking in the Global Economy, authored by Mariana Mazzucato, is essential reading. ‘Value’ used to be a primary tenet in economics. It essentially originates from the cost of production and determines the… Read more
Cover of Value of Everything by Mazzucato

2018 Research, Science and Innovation System Performance Report released

The 2018 Research, Science and Innovation System Performance Report has been released, outlining how New Zealand’s system is performing in key areas. The report details New Zealand’s strengths and weaknesses across a range of topics including people, skills, funding, and knowledge production, in comparison with other similar small economies and Australia. It will be used as an evidence base for… Read more

Marzouki and McDonnell: ‘Us’ and the ‘Other’: How populists continue to hijack religion

“I think Islam hates us. There’s a tremendous hatred there. There’s an unbelievable hatred of us”. So said presidential candidate Donald Trump in a March 2016 interview. “Us” and “Them”. Right-wing populists like Trump base their appeals on these antagonistic pillars. There is “the good people”. And, aligned against them, there are the corrupt elites and dangerous “others”. Who and… Read more
Definition of populism

Mary K Feeney: Why more women don’t win science Nobels

One of the 2018 Nobel Prizes in physics went to Donna Strickland, a major accomplishment for any scientist. Yet much of the news coverage has focused on the fact that she’s only the third female physicist to receive the award, after Marie Curie in 1903 and Maria Goeppert-Mayer 60 years later. Though biochemical engineer Frances Arnold also won this year, for chemistry, the rarity of female Nobel laureates… Read more
Nobel Prize winner Donna Strickland

Open Access Article of the Week: Housing Discrimination and Health: Understanding Potential Linking Pathways Using a Mixed-Methods Approach by Mehdipanah,Ramirez, Abedin, and Brown

Few studies have examined the impact of housing discrimination on health. This study explores potential pathways linking housing discrimination and health using concept mapping, a mixed-method approach. Participants included employees from twenty Fair Housing Organizations nationwide who participated in two online sessions, brainstorming, and structuring. Responses were generated representing biological,… Read more

Early Career Researcher Advice Article of the Week: Troscianko and Bray: Resilience: The feedback dynamics between you and academia

In the first post in this series on resilience, we thought about how you and the academic environment interact. We considered some of the benefits and drawbacks of working in academia, and some of the personal characteristics that might make you more or less resilient in the face of its stresses. In this post, we offer a way of modelling these interactions in more visual, dynamic terms. Seeing things drawn as well as written… Read more
Two people talking to each other in a feedback loop