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CRI scientists win Marsden Fund grants

Association of Crown Research Institutes
Immediate Release
8 September 2005

Crown Research Institute scientists win Marsden Fund grants

Twelve Crown Research Institute (CRI) scientists have been awarded grants from the Marsden Fund, New Zealand's premier fund for supporting excellence in curiosity-driven research.

The Marsden Fund aims to enhance the underpinning research knowledge base in New Zealand and contribute to the global advancement of knowledge, broaden and deepen the research skill base in New Zealand and undertake research that is investigator driven.

The contestable bidding process includes international peer review of excellence of the science team and project. Marsden awardees are free to follow up a line of enquiry simply to gain more knowledge, without necessarily having an end use in mind.

Congratulating all Marsden Fund Awardees from CRIs, universities and research associations, Paul McGilvary, President of the Association of Crown Research Institutes (ACRI) and chief executive of HortResearch said:

"Curiosity-driven research is a vital element in a well-balanced national innovation system.

"It augments the more directed research commissioned by central and local government agencies and other end users, particularly from CRIs with our role in developing and facilitating transfer and uptake of science and technology.

"That work often crowds out time for our researchers simply to follow their own curiosity which can open exciting new possibilities for new applications.

"So the Marsden Fund is an extremely valued counter-balance. The Awards also affirm CRIs commitment to excellence in all that we do."

The CRI Marsden Fund awardees are:

CRI Researchers Project Award/term

ESR Dr L (Liping) Pang; with Professor KA Hunter, University of Otago Virus hitchhikers - do colloids facilitate the rapid transport of viruses to our drinking water wells? $660,000 over 3 years

GNS Dr C (Cindy) Werner Volcanic controls on carbon dioxide emissions $140,000 over 2 years

HortResearch Dr TM (Toshi) Foster Pushing the boundaries in plant development $660,000 over 3 years

HortResearch Dr AM (Ashraf) El-Sayed and Dr DM (Max) Suckling Do carnivorous plants actively separate reproduction and feeding? $675,000 over 3 years

Industrial Research Limited Dr JL (Jeff) Tallon Filo-physics: low dimensional physics in hybrid organic-inorganic layered oxides $600,000 over 3 years

Landcare Research Dr MS (Matt) McGlone The Paradox of Maori settlement and widespread forest clearance $677,000 over 3 years

Landcare Research Dr TRB (Thomas) Buckley Ice-Age refugia in New Zealand $675,000 over 3 years

Landcare Research Dr T (Tad) Fukami Assembly history as a regulator of ecosystem functioning: a test with fungal communities $720,000 over 3 years

NIWA Dr J Renwick with Dr AB Pezza, University of Melbourne El Nino and the ozone hole $510,000 over 3 years

Massey University and Landcare Research Dr K McBreen (MU) with Dr PB (Peter) Heenan, (LCR) and Assoc Professor PJ Lockhart (MU) Using New Zealand Pachycladon to understand adaptive plant radiations $822,000 over 3 years

Massey University with GNS Dr SJ Cronin (MU) with Dr V (Vern)

Manville (GNS) Capturing the secrets of a life-sized lahar $720,000 over 3 years

Notes to Editor

ACRI provides a forum for the nine Crown-owned science enterprises. Crown Research Institutes contribute to the economic, environmental, social and knowledge wealth of New Zealand in diverse ways.

The CRIs undertake blue-sky, applied and commercialised science and technology research for government and private sector markets in New Zealand and abroad.

In addition to creating specific public benefits, they enable technology transfers to private sector and public organisations where wealth is multiplied and distributed.

CRIs also provide the essential underlying capability in people, facilities and knowledge for the long term future of science and innovation in New Zealand.

The CRIs are: AgResearch, Crop & Food Research, ESR, GNS, HortResearch, Industrial Research, Landcare Research, NIWA, Scion.

ENDS


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