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ECR Forum Committee Members

The following people are members of the Society's Early Career Researcher Forum.

Jane Allison – Co-chair (Massey University)

Jane Allison is a Rutherford Discovery Fellow and Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Natural and Mathematical Sciences at Massey University in Auckland, where she is also a member of the Centre for Theoretical Chemistry and Physics. Jane is also an Associate Investigator with the Biomolecular Interaction Centre at the University of Canterbury and with the Maurice Wilkins Centre for Molecular Biodiscovery. After obtaining a BSc (Hons) in Biochemistry from the University of Canterbury in 2003, Jane moved to the UK in 2004 to study towards a PhD with Prof. Chris Dobson in the Department of Chemistry at Cambridge University as one of the inaugural Woolf Fisher scholars. She then moved to Zürich, Switzerland, to work as a postdoctoral research assistant in the computer-aided chemistry group of Prof. Wilfred van Gunsteren at the ETH, before returning to New Zealand in January 2012. She now leads a research group at Massey who work on both the development of molecular simulation techniques and their application to problems in areas ranging from materials science and food technology through to medical biochemistry and answering fundamental evolutionary questions. Jane became a Co-opted Councillor for the Royal Society Te Apārangi Council in 2017, replacing Dr Giles Dodson.

Tom Baker – Co-chair (University of Auckland)

Tom Baker is a Lecturer in the School of Environment at the University of Auckland. He is a human geographer whose research examines the social and spatial dimensions of policy and policy-making. Using primarily qualitative approaches, Tom’s research focuses on the ways in which elected representatives, experts, and the public conceive of, and act upon, economically and socially marginalised populations. He completed his PhD at the University of Newcastle, Australia, and before coming to Auckland, he was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the Department of Geography at Simon Fraser University, Canada. Tom has also worked in the public sector at local and national levels, most recently at the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare.

Daniel Stouffer – Vice-Chair of Biological Sciences (University of Canterbury)

Daniel Stouffer is a Rutherford Discovery Fellow and Associate Professor in the School of Biological Sciences, University of Canterbury. Originally from the United States, Daniel completed a BSc in Chemical Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines (USA) and a PhD in Chemical and Biological Engineering at Northwestern University (USA). He then spent four years as a postdoctoral fellow in Professor Jordi Bascompte’s research group at the Estación Biológica de Doñana (Spain) after being awarded a JAE fellowship from the Spanish Research Council (CSIC) and a Juan de la Cierva fellowship from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation (MICINN). Daniel then joined the University of Canterbury in 2011 where he leads a research group focused on studying ecological complexity. Using a mix of tools and approaches from inside and outside biology (e.g., engineering, physics, or statistics), they take a quantitative approach to uncovering patterns in empirical data and exploring their ecological or evolutionary significance.

Patricia Durance – Vice-Chair of Physical Sciences (GNS Science)

Patricia Durance is a Minerals Geologist in the Geological Resources Division at GNS Science in Wellington. She concurrently holds an adjunct research associate position at the School of Earth, Atmosphere and Environment, Monash University, Australia. Patricia is a geochemist who has researched and published on a diverse range of topics such as water-rock interactions, stable isotope geochemistry, melt inclusions, and subduction zone magma genesis. Patricia is a key researcher in the four-year, New Zealand government-funded Gold Exploration Models programme, being led by GNS Science, and in the Direct Core Funded, Mapping Urban and Regional Geology programme. Her current research aims to understand the geochemical processes responsible for ore deposit formation, primarily through the use of a range of microanalytical techniques in conjunction with 3D modelling, GIS and exploration data integration. Patricia has been a member of the working committees to establishing ECR groups at the Royal Society of New Zealand and at GNS Science. She has a strong interest in matters related to gender and diversity in STEM in both academia and industry and was recently nominated to the Australian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy’s Women in Mining Network (WIMNet) Council, where she chairs the conference subcommittee and sits on the regional engagement subcommittee.

Philip Steer – Vice-Chair of Social Sciences & Humanities (Massey University)

Philip Steer is a Senior Lecturer in the School of English and Media Studies at Massey University. His research focuses on the literature and political economy of settler colonialism, especially in the context of Australia and New Zealand, and on the relationship between empire and the environment in the nineteenth century. After completing a BSc in Chemistry and an MA in English at Victoria University of Wellington, he completed a PhD in English at Duke University, supported by a Fulbright Scholarship. He returned to New Zealand in 2010, and was awarded a Marsden Fast-Start Grant the following year. He was recently awarded a Massey University Research Medal (Early Career). Philip is eager to support the development of ECR capacity in, and across, the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Tia Dawes – Committee Member (University of Auckland)

Ko Whakarongorua te maunga

Ko Utakura te awa

Ko Ngātokimatawhaorua te waka

Ko Ngāpuhi te iwi

Ko Ngāti Toro te hapū

Ko Joyce tōku whānau

Ko Tia Dawes tōku ingoa 

Tia is a Research Fellow with both the James Henare Māori Research Centre and the Centre for Learning and Research in Higher Education. Tia studied the oratory of the Late Roman Republic with a particular emphasis on the political writings of Cicero before becoming increasingly interested in issues that involve Māori. As a James Henare Māori Research Fellow he is part of multi-disciplinary team that has recently been awarded a NSC grant to conduct a study addressing the health-care needs of kaumātua in Te Tai Tokerau. He has also been appointed a Clear Research Fellow at the Centre of Learning and Research in Higher Education for 2018 to evaluate how career development and employability programmes have influenced Māori academic and career decision-making processes. This study will ensure future programming remain relevant to these student groups over coming years.

Gradon Diprose – Committee Member (School of Health and Social Sciences - Wellington)

 Gradon is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Health and Social Sciences at the Open Polytechnic. He has a background in human geography, completing his PhD at Victoria University of Wellington in 2015. To date his research has explored how people come together to contest disempowering processes that threaten their livelihoods and cultural survival, and how they collectively enact alternatives. He is a member of the Community Economies Collective, a group of scholars drawing on the work of J.K. Gibson-Graham to rethink the economy and build more sustainable socio-economic alternatives to support life. Gradon is currently a Co-Primary Investigator on Delivering Urban Wellbeing through Transformative Community Enterprise (National Science Challenge). This research investigates the social, economic and material impacts of a community enterprise in Christchurch. Prior to completing his PhD, Gradon worked as a planner in local government at various councils in Aotearoa New Zealand.

William Godsoe – Committee Member (Lincoln University)

William is a Lecturer at the BioProtection Research Centre and Lincoln University. Having completed his PhD during the “great recession” of 2009 he is quite conscious of the challenges that face early career scientists. His research focuses on using quantitative tools to better predict where species can be found in nature, and is particularly interest in the fates of invasive species that arrive in New Zealand. Originally from Canada, completed his PhD from the University of Idaho, a Postdoc at the United States National Institute for Mathematical and Biological Synthesis at the University of Tennessee and has worked at both the University of Canterbury and Lincoln University.

Rosie Ibbotson – Committee Member (University of Canterbury)

Rosie is a Lecturer in Art History and Theory at Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha University of Canterbury. Her research is varied and interdisciplinary, but mostly relates to art, architecture, and material culture of the ‘long’ nineteenth century, principally that deriving from European representational practices. Current research interests include the international Arts and Crafts Movement’s engagement with science, technology, and the environment; material culture, transformation, and memory in post-earthquake Christchurch; and visual representation within discourses of de-extinction. At Canterbury, Rosie lectures predominantly in the areas of art theory, museology, and European art and material culture, and has won awards for her teaching. Prior to joining UC’s Department of Art History and Theory, Rosie was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at Yale University, and before this she completed a doctorate at the University of Cambridge. In her role on the Early Career Researcher Forum Committee Rosie seeks to be a voice for concerns specific to arts and humanities research, as well as to support researchers across other disciplines in both field-specific and shared challenges and areas of potential.

Stefanie Kremser – Committee Member (Bodeker Scientific)

Stefanie Kremser is an ECR working at Bodeker Scientific (BS) in Alexandra. Unlike many other research organisations in New Zealand, BS is a private non-profit atmospheric research company focussing on stratospheric ozone, atmospheric composition change and climate change. After completing her Diplom (equivalent to a master degree) in Meteorology at the Freie Universitaet Berlin, Germany, in 2007, Stefanie received a German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) Scholarship to carry out her PhD project at the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) in Lauder, New Zealand. After finishing her PhD, she successfully applied for a 3 year fast-start Marsden grant titled “How do sulfate aerosols get in the stratosphere?”. As a result of the Marsden grant, Stefanie became involved in the SPARC activity ‘Stratospheric Sulfur and its Role in Climate (SSiRC)’ where she is now a member of the coordination team. This role, and her research, provides her with strong links to the national and international research community. As a result, she spends time each year working with collaborators in the USA and in Europe. Stefanie is a member of the Young Earth System Scientist community and has organized ECR side events at international conferences.

Dr Marama Muru-Lanning – Committee Member (University of Auckland)

Marama Muru-Lanning is a Senior Research Fellow and Acting Director of the James Henare Māori Research Centre at the University of Auckland. Her research is primarily concerned with debates and critical challenges in social anthropology where she focuses on the cultural specificity of Māori and their unique sense of place and belonging in New Zealand.  What distinguishes Marama as a social scientist is her specialization in water rights, the privatisation of natural resources and human-environment relationships. She currently holds a Royal Society Marsden Research Grant, advises on Elderly Wellbeing projects for the School of Population and Health and is a Council member of the Journal of the Polynesian Society, New Zealand’s oldest scholarly journal.

Marama is from Tūrangawaewae Marae and is of Waikato Tainui and Ngāti Maniapoto descent.

Caroline Orchiston – Committee Member (University of Otago)

Caroline is the Deputy Director of the Centre for Sustainability at the University of Otago. Her research interests lie at the interface between earth and social science, investigating societal disaster resilience and recovery, community and business resilience, and scenario planning for impacts to critical infrastructure and emergency management during disasters. Caroline is an Associate Investigator on Resilience to Nature’s Challenges (National Science Challenge), a multi-disciplinary programme that aims to build a more resilient New Zealand by transforming how we prepare for and mitigate against rapid (earthquakes, floods) and slow onset (climate change-related) disasters. Since 2010, Caroline has been involved in a longitudinal study of community preparedness and awareness of natural hazard risk in Washington State, USA in collaboration with GNS Science, Washington State Emergency Management and the United States Geological Survey. Caroline is an Associate or Lead Investigator on several other projects funded by QuakeCoRE (TEC), New Zealand Transport Authority, Earthquake Commission and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

Amy Osborne – Committee Member (Canterbury University, Christchurch)

Amy is a Lecturer in genomics within the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch.  Originally from the UK, Amy completed a BSc(Hons) in Biomedical Science at King’s College London, and followed this by working as a research associate at the Medical Research Council (Imperial College London) studying the genomics of complex disease.  After moving to New Zealand in 2006, Amy spent two years working as a research associate, first with the Wakefield Gastroenterology Research group in Wellington, and then in the Molecular Ecology Research group at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch.  Amy undertook her PhD in population genomics at the University of Otago and completed this in 2011 (Dean’s list of Exceptional Theses).  Amy has worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Colorado Denver (Anschutz Medical Campus), at the University of Otago in Dunedin and also at the University of Otago, Christchurch, with research interests spanning developmental genomics, evolution and development, and epigenetics.  Amy’s current research focuses on the interaction between the genome and the environment, via epigenetics.  

Lucy Stewart – Committee Member (GNS Wellington)

Lucy is a postdoctoral researcher in the Marine Geosciences department at GNS Science, based in Wellington. She is an environmental microbiologist and specialises in the microbiology of high-temperature environments such as deep-sea hydrothermal vents. Her research aims to understand the interface between the biosphere and geosphere by characterising and cultivating microorganisms that grow using inorganic substrates such as metals, sulfur compounds, methane, and hydrogen. Lucy received a B.A. in History and a B.Sc.(Hons) in Microbiology from the University of Canterbury. She completed a PhD at the University of Massachusetts (Amherst), supported by a Fulbright scholarship. Upon returning to New Zealand in 2015 she was awarded a Rutherford Postdoctoral Fellowship to characterise the microbial diversity of high-temperature environments along the offshore Kermadec volcanic arc. She is also an investigator on a recently-funded MBIE Endeavour Fund project to study the potential impacts of gas hydrate mining in New Zealand's offshore waters. Lucy sits on the Wellington Early Career Researchers committee.