The science of stuff we use to make things

The science of stuff we use to make things

 

In 2016 MacDiarmid Investigators again traveled to six regional centres in New Zealand to deliver public science lectures. A Materials History of the World covered materials history both within western science and from the perspective of indigenous Pacific materials heritage and culture and looked to the future impact of materials science has on our lives. Based in part on research and slides generously provided by Professor Richard Walter of the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Otago, the lectures were held in Napier, Tauranga, Wanaka, Invercargill, Whanganui and Nelson between July and September 2016. The lectures drew large crowds and feedback (through a written exit survey) was consistently and overwhelmingly positive.

We thank our people—Dr Michelle Dickinson, Dr Franck Natali, Dr Catherine Whitby, Dr Geoff Willmott, Associate Professor Duncan Macgillivray, Dr Natalie Plank, Associate Professor Nicola Gaston, Professor Richard Blaikie, Dr Laura Domigan, Associate Professor Mark Waterland, Professor Penny Brothers, Dr Vladimir Golovko. 

MacDiarmid Emeritus Investigator and University of Otago Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Richard Blaikie, who gave the lecture in Invercargill, said the content of the lecture resonated well in the deep south. 

“There’s a connection to indigenous materials, especially in Invercargill, where we could talk about the very important quarry sites in Bluff and the modern materials processes just across the harbour at Tiwai Point.” 

Professor Blaikie said he thoroughly enjoyed giving the lecture. 

“I’m a Southlander so any opportunity to go to the fine city of Invercargill I’ll jump on. And the Regional Lecture Series sits with the philosophy of the Institute and also the broader objective of MacDiarmid research in particular, where we have a culture of service; speaking about science—and materials science in particular—is what we do.”