A Place To Live




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Following the exciting and groundbreaking 2012 Transit of Venus Forum in Gisborne, the MacDiarmid Institute and Victoria University of Wellington, in association with the Royal Society of NZ and Wanganui District Council, are hosting a national conference to continue the drive to make New Zealand – all of New Zealand – “the place talent wants to live”.
The focus will be on ways of improving the environments and economies of our regions and smaller centres, and the human need to connect with the natural environment. In honour of Sir Paul Callaghan, Whanganui, the city of his childhood, has been chosen to host the event.
Broadcaster Kim Hill will moderate the discussions and ensure there’s never a dull moment. There will be a range of speakers and panellists from Mayors to cooks to fresh water scientists to mental health specialists and businesswomen.


Many details are still to be finalised, but we are happy to announce that our keynote speaker will be Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods and The Nature Principle.  Louv is in great demand as a speaker around the world, with his compelling arguments that alienation from nature is a factor in many western world epidemics – obesity and associated health problems, mental ill health, attention deficit disorder and high anxiety levels – and risks a loss of creativity borne of free, unstructured play outside.  Despite our ready access to the natural environment, New Zealand is ahead of western world trends in some of the adverse effects associated with new technologies and changed lifestyles.







Dame Anne Salmond, 2013 Kiwibank NZer of the Year, will give the New Zealand Rutherford Lecture on rivers – Give me the water of life – on the eve of the conference, Sunday 16 November, and lead a workshop – New River Futures – on Monday 17 November. 
The Whanganui River, and the people who live there, will be the first focus of the conference.  On the Monday, we’ll travel up the river to meet the tangata whenua and learn something of its history.


Join us for a unique experience, meet the tangata whenua of Whanganui, and contribute your experience and ideas to improving the quality of life and the health of the environment throughout our land.
Take advantage of early bird registration discounts when registrations open in May at www.aplacetolive.org.nz.
Enquires can be directed to glendajanelewis @ gmail dot com.