New Zealand Awards Fellowships for Discovery

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 11, 2009 2:50 pm    Post subject: New Zealand Awards Fellowships for Discovery Reply with quote

Fourteen of New Zealandís brightest researchers have been awarded fellowships from the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology to undertake scientific research at the frontiers of new knowledge.

Research topics for the recipients of the Foundationís Postdoctoral Fellowships include infectious and allergic diseases, ultra-cold atomic physics, new sources of renewable energy, composite materials for the marine and aerospace industries and ways to improve the quality of radiata pine.

A total of 49 scientists were considered for the fellowships, with 14 awarded in the current round. Postdoctoral Fellowships are designed to foster the development of New Zealandís emerging and future science leaders and build greater research capability and knowledge.

Recipients are offered an annual stipend of up to $58,000 a year for three years, plus allowances for research costs and ongoing skills development, with each fellow eligible to receive a total of $264,000 over the three years. The Foundation is investing $3.687 million in this round of fellowship candidates and invests $6 million annually in the fellowship programme.

Three of the researchers have recently returned or will return to New Zealand to take up their fellowships while another three will carry out their studies overseas, working with internationally respected research organisations.

Foundation CEO Murray Bain says it is exciting to see New Zealandís emerging scientific talent being applied to cutting-edge areas of discovery and new technologies that will build capability and position New Zealand as a world leader in some research areas.

ďItís also rewarding to see outstanding researchers returning to New Zealand to take up fellowships and contribute their knowledge to industries and issues of vital importance to our economy and our wellbeing,Ē said Murray Bain.

The fellowships have been awarded to Ashton Bradley, Christina McGraw and Tina Summerfield (all University of Otago); Pascale Michel (Landcare Research); Hema Nair (University of Canterbury); Gayle Ferguson and Monica Gerth (both Massey University); James Russell (University of California); Peng Cao (University of Waikato); Jessica Costa, Jim Lee and Lijuan Zhang (all University of Auckland); Lincoln Tubbs (University of Guelph, Canada); and Nicholas van Panhuys (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, United States).

Fellowship applications are assessed against criteria including the benefit to New Zealand and the ability of the research to deliver tangible results that can be implemented into viable products or processes.

Source: University of Otago
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