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Building New Zealand's Knowledge Base

The Government will spend up to $37 million a year to fund more than 1600 tertiary education scholarships, Minister for Tertiary Education Max Bradford announced today.

"The scholarships will encourage a greater number of young New Zealanders with the potential to build New Zealand's knowledge base to get skills in the science and technology area.

"They will also help focus research into areas that will be the source of New Zealand's future wealth," Mr Bradford said.

"The scholarships will increase the supply of highly-trained researchers and graduates, as well as providing incentives for stronger links between tertiary education providers and business enterprises," he said.

Mr Bradford announced that three new tertiary level scholarships would be launched:

I. Enterprise Scholarships - Government will contribute up to $20 million of new funding annually by 2004
A. For advanced tertiary study, join
tly agreed between student, education provider and enterprise.
B. Jointly funded with industry to increase the pool of people with specialised skills.
C. Next year around 500 students will receive enterprise scholarships, rising to 1000 in 2001 and 1500 from 2002 onwards.
D. Scholarship value around $8000 per annum, per student.

II. Top Achiever Doctoral Scholarships - $10 million of new funding each year by 2002

A. Up to 80 scholarships for study each year here or overseas
B. Worth around $40,000 each per year
C. Recipients will be bonded.


III. Post-Doctoral Fellowships - worth $7.25 million a year

A. Will allow students who have completed their PhD in New Zealand to complete post-doctoral research here or overseas.
B. Funding will be reallocated from existing programmes, including $2 million from the public good science fund.
C. Will allow approximately 26 new fellowships to be awarded - double the number currently available in one year.

"Backing our brightest and best will strengthen New Zealand's ability to innovate and create value," Mr Bradford said.

"In the knowledge economy our ability to embrace new technologies, develop new ideas and make them work for us, will be more important than our ability to simply farm or manufacture efficiently," he said.

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