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University Celebrates New Fellows of Royal Society

Media release

The University of Auckland

12 November 2009

Six of the ten newly elected Fellows of the Royal Society of New Zealand (FRSNZ) are from The University of Auckland.

"Fellowship of the Royal Society signifies national recognition of academic excellence and we are delighted that our researchers have been acknowledged in this way," says Professor Jane Harding, Deputy Vice Chancellor Research.

Professor Alistair Gunn (Physiology) was recognised for his research on major causes of death and disability in early childhood and prevention of life threatening events in infancy.

Professor Edwin Mitchell (Paediatrics) for his leading role in child health research, particularly the identification of risk factors for sudden infant death syndrome and the promotion of prevention strategies.

Professor Eamonn O'Brien (Mathematics) was honoured as a leading international algebraist focussing on computational algebra and group theory.

Professor Andrew Pullan (Engineering) was elected as a leading bioengineer, recognised for his work modelling current flow in the torso for clinical applications in electrocardiography.

Professor Allen Rodrigo (Biological Sciences) for his international reputation in bioinformatics and the development of computational methods to infer evolutionary patterns and processes, including for viruses like HIV, SARS and influenza.

Professor David Williams (Chemistry) was recognised as a leading international figure in electrochemistry, with notable contributions on the pitting corrosion of stainless steels and successful commercialisation of gas sensor devices.

In addition, Professor Timothy Burstein, a specialist in electrochemistry and corrosion science who graduated from The University of Auckland and is now at the University of Cambridge, was named an Honorary Fellow of the Society.

Fellowship of the Royal Society of New Zealand is conferred for distinction in research or the advancement of science or technology. This year the Royal Society elected ten new Fellows, bringing the total to 347.

Honorary Fellowship, conferred upon academics at overseas institutions, aims to encourage liaison between scientists of different nations and promote communication and links. Four Honorary Fellows were elected this year, and the total now stands at 54.


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