Dr Mary Simpson

Mary Simpson

Senior Lecturer in Management Communication

Qualifications: PhD

Personal Website:

About Mary

My research focuses on stakeholder participation in organisations and the changing nature of organisational membership, with most of my research concentrating on elders (people over 65yrs). My PhD looked at communication issues associated with retirement village organisations and retirement village residents. Currently I am exploring digital communication and online citizenship in relation to intergenerational communication.

My research interests lead me to working with the Rauawaawa Kaumātua Charitable Trust (RKCT) in 2009, and becoming a long-term supporter of the Trust. In 2011 and 2015 we collaborated on a presentation for the Kingitanga Day at the University.  In 2014 I served on the Trust’s advisory group to develop a suicide prevention strategy for Kaumātua. Since 2012 my key support role has involved to organise a volunteer student communications team for Trust’s Kaumātua Olympics. This event has more than 300 competitors and 80 volunteers.

My teaching centres on digital enhanced, interpersonal and team communication. Currently I teach the following papers: Communication in an Online Society (LCOMM102); and Managing Virtual Team Communication (MCOM502). These papers enable me to explore contemporary communication issues with students, with a special focus on digital, professional, and intercultural communication.

I am a member of the International Communication Association (ICA) and the Australian and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA), and I am currently on the executive for ANZCA.

Before joining the University of Waikato I worked in relationship management, organisational development, business planning, teamwork, and health social work practice. I am passionate about teaching the practical implications of theory in real work practice.

Papers Taught

Recent Publications

  • Hutchinson, J., Barbour, K., & Simpson, M. (2017). Communication research in online worlds: Ethical approaches to design and participation in social media research. In Australia and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) Annual Conference.

  • Ake, T., & Simpson, M. (2017). Work as expression of Maori values: Kaumatua stories of work. In Australia and New Zealand Communication Association (ANZCA) Annual Conference. Sydney, Australia.

  • Simpson, M., Harding, T., & Shelford, P. (2017). Kaumatua managing life transitions through tuakana-teina/peer-support: An example of integrating student doctoral research with externally funded research. In The HOPE-Selwyn Knowledge Exchange for Research on Ageing.

  • Hokowhitu, B., Oetzel, J., Reddy, R., Smith, L., Simpson, M., Nock, S., . . . Johnston, K. (2017). Kaumatua mana motuhake: Kaumatua managing life-transitions through tuakana-teina/peer education. In The New Zealand Medical Journal: Proceedings of the Waikato Clinical Campus Biannual Research Seminar Vol. 130 (pp. 108).

Find more research publications by Mary Simpson


Adult Education; Ageing; Assessment and Evaluation in Education; Communication; Curriculum; Doctoral Education; Education; E-Education; Health; Leadership; Learning; Management; Management and Education; Pedagogy; Professional Learning; Public Relations; Social Movements; Social Networks; Social Work; Sustainability; Teaching; Teaching Online; Tertiary Education; Treaty of Waitangi

Ethics; Organisational Communication; Organising

Contact Details

Room: MSB.4.35
Phone: +64 7 837 9278
Cellphone: 027 294 6586