The Allan Wilson Centre – Science in New Zealand

In her MacMillan Brown lecture (the second of 2009), Professor Lisa Matisoo-Smith mentioned the work being done by the Allan Wilson Centre (for Molecular Ecology & Evolution) and the way in which they work with local iwi to share knowledge and learn together… this sounded really interesting to me.

The blurb on the Centre’s website states: “The Allan Wilson Centre advances knowledge of the evolution and ecology of New Zealand and Pacific plant and animal life, and human history in the Pacific.  We are a network of 100 researchers at seven institutions, committed to securing the future of New Zealand’s biodiversity and improving human and environmental health.

How did the evolutionary trajectory unfold in New Zealand’s unique conditions?  Why are plants and animals so different here?  What can the diversity and history of life in New Zealand tell the world about evolutionary processes generally?  And how did humans arrive in New Zealand, learn to thrive here, and create conditions for our future?  We use forefront tools in genomics and biomathematics to answer these questions and uncover our history.”

The Centre makes resources available online to teachers about their work (powerpoints on human evolution and the like)… COOL

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About backyardbooks

This blog is a kind of electronic storage locker for ideas and quotes that inform my research... literary research into fiction for young adults (with a special focus on New Zealand fiction). Kiwis are producing amazing literature for younger readers, but it isn't getting the academic appreciation it deserves. I hope readers of this blog can make use of the material I gather and share by way of promoting our fiction. Cheers!
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