Kolleg on German-New Zealand science relations

Humboldtians from New Zealand and Australia discussed global science issues in Wellington, New Zealand. 

What drives weather phenomena in the Antarctic Ocean? What significance do historical scientific and cultural contacts in the Pacific region have for us today? How do collaborative activities with Germany contribute to the investigation of global issues raised by science and society? Attended by approximately 90 participants, the Humboldt Kolleg “Our Changing World in the South Pacific” held in New Zealand's capital Wellington from 17 to 19 November gave centre stage to the current research being conducted by Humboldtians from New Zealand and Australia as well as young researchers and collaborative partners from Germany and demonstrated their importance for current issues that are at the core of a committed dialogue revolving around knowledge. The event also marked the 40th anniversary of German-New Zealand and German-Australian collaboration in science and technology. 

Scientific contacts are of enormous importance for the relations between the three countries

In their addresses during the opening ceremony at the Royal Society of New Zealand, Gerhard Thiedemann, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany, and Margaret Hyland, Chief Scientist at New Zealand's Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE), underscored how important good science contacts are for relations between the three countries. David Lowe, the government's Coordinator for the New Zealand-Germany Science and Innovation Relationship, emphasised the strong links scientists in New Zealand have with German partners, citing as an example how Humboldtians help develop and cultivate long-term collaboration in research and teaching through their personal contacts with German scientists and scholars.

More than 660 members in the Humboldt network in Australia and New Zealand

The Humboldt network in Australia and New Zealand currently counts approximately 660 scientists and scholars. The Humboldt Kolleg was organised and hosted by the New Zealand Association of von Humboldt Fellows under the auspices of Eamonn O'Brien, Professor at University of Auckland. Together with the Australian Association of von Humboldt Fellows, the New Zealand alumni association holds Humboldt Kollegs for the network in the region on a regular basis.

A total of 49 Humboldt Kollegs around the world in 2017

Through its Humboldt Kolleg Programme, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation supports initiatives of Humboldt alumni associations and individual Humboldtians to conduct regional and specialist conferences in their countries. Forty-nine Humboldt Kollegs have been held around the world in 2017.


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  • 40 Jahre deutsch-neuseel√§ndische wissenschaftliche und technologische Zusammenarbeit
  • 40 Jahre deutsch-australische wissenschaftliche und technologische Zusammenarbeit