MacDiarmid Institute Refunded: Thank you and congratulations

MacDiarmid Institute Refunded: Thank you and congratulations

With the news that we have been successful in gaining funding through to the end of 2020 I get to be a bit self-indulgent this week and focus on thanking people for their participation and support during the past year or so as we developed the strategy for the bid.

Many people have played very crucial roles leading up to the announcement. Alison Downard, David Williams and Keith Gordon members of my writing team; Jeff Tallon, Juliet Gerard and Simon Hall, my advisory team who allowed me to just bounce ideas off them and critique the document; Rebecca Priestly who worked very rapidly to provide editing and comments on the proposal; Simon Brown, Justin Hodgkiss, Nicola Gaston, Bill Williams and Joe Trodahl who worked with Alison in drafting the science plan; the administration team Emily Sullivan, Sarah Dadley, Rebekah Hunt and Kylie Docherty who got things when I needed them; all the investigators who worked so hard back in August during our three day science planning meeting and provided information rapidly when called upon to do so; Andy Newman who worked with me on getting the budget right; and Chris Dean and Gwyn Williams from the VUW research office. All of these people helped to ensure there were words of a page that made sense and came together as a strong proposal.

Glenda Lewis – the complete faith and the perpetual desire to work with us on the big stuff like the public forums to the smaller stuff like being one of our article writers – thanks!

The build up to the rebid was long and a lot of work. The members of my Board worked closely with me as I began the development of the budget and the new partnership framework. They kept me moving forward and made sure I was informed when I needed to be and did a lot of work in the background – thank you to all of you and in particular of course Steve Thompson my Chairman.

There were various people at the partner organisations (including Board members) who spent several hours with me during the partnership negotiations. These negotiations weren’t always easy but we got something very strong in the end.

Geof Shirtcliffe our lawyer for drafting the new Heads of Agreement – of course now that we have been successful we know what is coming now – the new MOU!

To the Vice Chancellors and CEOs of the partners, thanks for wanting to go with the MacDiarmid Institute again – it is going to be an awesome next six years.

To my VUW leadership team – Pat Walsh, Neil Quigley, David Bibby, Charles Daugherty, Mike Wilson, Geoff Todd, Uli Zuelicke, John Spencer and latterly Grant Guilford – how can a chick fail with all you guys standing around her for support – thanks all of you, you mean the world to me!

We also have our newly formed Industry Advisory Group. We are going to set up some really cool stuff working with all of you, this is one of the new things I am really excited about.

There are also several people external to the institute that I worked with in getting the bid together and forming the new facets and relationships that have become key aspects of differentiation of our programme and ensure that we leverage our capacity to the maximum. Murray Nash and Richard Janes, Callaghan Innovation, Bram Smith, KiwiNet, Andrew Preston, Publons and Nicola Meek, Eseta Fuli, and Shelley Hughes, New Zealand Educational Institute, Te Riu Roa. The development of the four new MOUs couldn’t have been done without your enthusiasm for what I was trying to do in linking us all up. The creation of this broader network is going to deliver massively for all of us and for New Zealand.

David and Alison – I know I have thanked you above but you believed in me and in what I was working towards, without that support I doubt I could have pulled it off, all credit to both of you. Thank you seems quite lame for all that has meant to me.

Congratulations everyone associated with the MacDiarmid Institute, this success belongs to every single one of you – enjoy the feeling, job well done!

Enjoy your weekend everyone,