Science Media Centre

Science Media Centre

Reflections On Science

The high public cost of muzzling scientists – Shaun Hendy

John Kerr posted in on May 9th, 2016.

Ahead of the launch of his new book Silencing Science, Prof Shaun Hendy has written an opinion article for the Dominion Post. You can also see an interview with Prof Hendy on the Q + A show, and read an Q&A with the New Zealand Herald’s Jamie Morton.  An excerpt of the article (read in […]

Fukushima and NZ: Five years later – Expert reaction

John Kerr posted in on March 10th, 2016.

Five years on from the Fukushima meltdown, the SMC asks if we have seen any effects in New Zealand. And have our attitudes towards nuclear power changed? It was the worst nuclear event since Chernobyl. In the wake of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, a crippled Japanese nuclear powerplant went into meltdown, and the world […]

Science strategy launched – Expert Reaction

John Kerr posted in on October 5th, 2015.

The Government has laid out its strategy for science over the next decade in a new National Statement of Science Investment, launched this morning. The Statement sets out the governments long-term vision for the science system, and a strategic direction to guide future investment. “The NSSI provides a timely stocktake on the overall shape of […]

Concern over “gagged” scientists – Radio New Zealand

John Kerr posted in on June 22nd, 2015.

Scientists are being pressured by their employers not to speak out on contentions issues, according the New Zealand Association of Scientists (NZAS). Association president Dr Nicola Gaston highlighted the problem on Radio New Zealand this morning, raising the issue in the wake of a poll conducted last year which found many scientists did not feel […]

Science and the media on Radio NZ’s ‘The Panel’

John Kerr posted in on February 5th, 2015.

Yesterday Jim Mora’s Radio New Zealand show Afternoons featured robust discussion on the topic of science and the media, focussing on a blog post from Dilbert cartoonist Scott Adams. The first five minutes of ‘The Panel’ segment, which you can listen to below, featured Julie Moffett, Andrew Clay and Linda Clark (a former journalist) picking […]

‘Opinion gap’ between science and public – experts respond

John Kerr posted in on January 30th, 2015.

Is GM food safe to eat? Are humans responsible for climate change? Should we use animals in research? The views of scientists on these contentious questions are often very different from the public’s, according to a wide-ranging US survey, and highlight need for better dialogue. The Pew Research Center, in collaboration with the American Association […]

Jim Salinger on why NZ is drying out

John Kerr posted in on September 26th, 2014.

[this link has been updated, to read Dr Nicola Gaston’s blog on science and democracy, click here] New Zealand is drying out, and here’s why By Jim Salinger, University of Auckland (this article is republished from The Conversation under Creative commons license). Over 2012 and 2013, parts of New Zealand experienced their worst drought in […]

Strategic plan to foster curious minds

John Kerr posted in on July 29th, 2014.

A new report from the government lays out a plan to encourage and enable a more science-literate and aware society. A Nation of Curious Minds: He Whenua Hirihi I te Mahara – is the blueprint for the Science in Society Project which came out of the National Science Challenges. The project called on the government […]

Education at the core of science literacy – Gluckman

John Kerr posted in on November 28th, 2013.

The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, Prof Sir Peter Gluckman, has written about the role of science in society in a new blog posting. His comments follow the announcement of a unique joint education-science sector plan to lift engagement and achievement in science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) across New Zealand. An excerpt (read in […]

PM’s Science Advisor wades into water fluoridation

John Kerr posted in on June 13th, 2013.

The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, Professor Sir Peter Gluckman, has added his voice to the discussion on the topical issue of water fluoridation and science. He has written a blog post exploring the science of fluoridation and how it can be used – and misused – in the current debate. An excerpt (read in […]

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