Science and Society

How much of Māori:European mortality inequalities are due to socioeconomic position and tobacco? - Public Health Expert

Public Health Expert Jun 15, 2018

Prof Tony Blakely, Dr Andrea Teng, Prof Nick Wilson Policy-makers need to know how much of ethnic inequalities in health are due to socioeconomic position and tobacco smoking, but quantifying this is surprisingly difficult. In this Blog, and accompanying video, we summarize new research using NZ’s linked census-mortality data, blended with innovative new ‘counterfactual’ methods to determine causal relationships … Read More

Remembering Peter Nelson’s advice – pest management for the 21st century - Politecol

- Wayne Linklater Jun 14, 2018

Peter Nelson is remembered as a founder of modern, 21st Century, pest management in New Zealand. In 1993, reflecting on our nation’s failure to eradicate Australian brushtail possum, rabbits and deer, he wrote: “The aim of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is to reduce pest damage to tolerable levels by using a variety of techniques, and ultimately also to reduce … Read More

Appeal to antiquity? Appeal to nature? Bingo! - BioBlog

Alison Campbell Jun 13, 2018

I was idly skimming the Herald’s website when I came across an article with the headline “Is plant medicine really that effective?” Since the article appears to be in the nature of an advertorial, the answer is, it depends on who you ask. Unlike man-made chemical drugs that have been developed as novel medicines from the 19th century onwards, plant medicines … Read More

Our secret urban wildlife: Giant centipedes - Chthonic Wildlife Ramblings

Brendan Moyle Jun 12, 2018

One thing I like about returning to NZ from places like China, is being around nature again. We live in one of the few parts of the world, and certainly the developed world, where wildlife is sometimes not just at our doorsteps, but also inside as well. Urban Forests Some of this is down to our urban forests. Our urban … Read More

Alcohol harms and the NZ reforms - The Dismal Science

Eric Crampton Jun 12, 2018

Man, I shouldn’t have gotten my hopes up. The Science Media Centre pointed me to reporting on some new work look at what’s happened consequent to National’s Sale & Supply of Alcohol Act 2012. It always felt like a spot where some really good work could be done. Different locales implemented different district licensing plans at different times, so … Read More

Why won’t scientific evidence change the minds of Loch Ness monster true believers? - Guest Work

Guest Work Jun 07, 2018

Artūrs Logins, University of Southern California – Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences You may have noticed a curious recent announcement: An international research team plans to use state-of-the-art DNA testing to establish once and for all whether the Loch Ness monster exists. Regardless of the results, it’s unlikely the test will change the mind of … Read More

Is there science in reflexology? - BioBlog

Alison Campbell Jun 06, 2018

I subscribe to the Tertiary Insight newsletter (a great way to keep up with news of what’s happening in the tertiary sector). Yesterday’s edition included a statement (& a link) about the NZQA’s decision to cancel the registration of the Aromaflex Academy. It seems that this Private Training Establishment (PTE) was placed under strict conditions in January 2018, & … Read More

Could – & should – the moa be a goer again? - BioBlog

Alison Campbell Jun 03, 2018

I’m starting to gear up for some Schol Bio preparation days in the regions (hi, Hawkes Bay! See you in 4 weeks!) and realised that I haven’t written anything specifically focused on those exams for a while. So I thought that putting something together would be a good way to spend a rather wet Sunday. At these days we usually … Read More