Guest Work

Kahawai, the people’s fish

Guest Author Jan 13, 2011

The second in a summer series from NIWA… Kahawai are an iconic species for recreational fishers. They are fantastic fighters and are found in most coastal waters, harbours, and estuaries around New Zealand, in both the North Island and South Island. Many New Zealanders will have memories of catching kahawai in the summer with their granddad, in a small boat, … Read More

Canada's oil sands – navigating the rhetoric

Guest Author Jan 12, 2011

by Eloise Gibson It’s a little-known fact in these parts that Canada has the second-biggest proven crude oil reserves in the world. Rather than gushing straight from a well, the thick oil is locked in a molasses-like mixture with sand, clay and water. The goo is mined and then purified using a process that is heavy on greenhouse emissions, energy … Read More


RIP: "Arch sceptic" Denis Dutton

Guest Author Dec 29, 2010

Another Candle Goes Out…. By Vicki Hyde, Media Spokesperson, former Chair-entity, NZ Skeptics We´ve lost another light against the darkness, with the death of Denis Dutton. Denis was a founder member of New Zealand Skeptics, back in 1984 when it was known as the NZ Committee for Scientific Investigation of the Paranormal. For many years he was the face … Read More


Popularising science – a word from the experts

Guest Author Dec 15, 2010

By Professor Lloyd Davis The University of Otago established the Centre for Science Communication in 2008 and with it New Zealand’s first dedicated degree in science communication: the Master of Science Communication (MSciComm). Lloyd Davis The MSciComm comes in three distinct flavours — and while many are familiar with the Science and Natural History Filmmaking endorsement, … Read More


Never mind climate change, what about biodiversity change?

Guest Author Nov 25, 2010

by Professor Ian Spellerberg Al Morrison (DG Department of Conservation) ruffled few feathers in Wellington recently, so I am told, as a result of some comments he made at the Annual State of the Nation’s Environment Address held at Lincoln University. He said ’Living in harmony with nature’s systems; living sustainably, is not apart from the economy, it’s a … Read More


Careers in science

Guest Author Nov 23, 2010

Lesley Middleton, Chief Executive of the Ministry of Research, Science and Technology At the recent and very successful Running Hot conference at Te Papa, I gave a presentation at a symposium for new and emerging scientists, in which I talked about career paths. One diagram in particular sparked a lot of discussion. Read More


Liability and GMOs

Guest Author Nov 04, 2010

By Jack Heinemann The world has just met in Nagoya Japan (11-15 October 2010) for negotiations on the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, an international treaty which also binds New Zealand. The Biosafety Protocol regulates the transboundary movement of Living genetically engineered/Modified Organisms (in treaty language, LMOs)[1]. This cumbersome language means LMOs that are shipped across … Read More

’I’m not a Scientist but …’; Dissection of an antivaxxer’s argument

Guest Author Nov 03, 2010

By Michael Edmonds When Darcy at Sciblogs mentioned that it was Vaccine Awareness Week and that some posts on vaccines would be helpful I wasn’t quite sure if I could contribute as my background is chemistry not immunology. However, given the amount of mis-information around about what goes into vaccines I thought perhaps I could … Read More


Innovation just a "buzzword"

Guest Author Oct 27, 2010

by Dr John Robinson Innovation is a buzzword of uncertain meaning used to hide an absence of ideas. Innovation The question of just what is being referred to, and measured, is problematic. The problem is not just one of definition, but is inherent in the topic itself. As noted in the key OECD Oslo Manual, ’the complexity of the innovation … Read More