Media Advisory May 4

Subjects ranked among best in world

Ten subjects taught at the University of Waikato have been recognised as among the best in the world. The subjects have been ranked in the top 200 in the world by rankings organisation Quacquarelli Symonds. Last year the university had five subjects ranked in the top 150 but the latest rankings now have 10 in the top 200 and another, modern languages, in the top 250. University of Waikato Vice-Chancellor Professor Neil Quigley says the subjects are from a range of faculties and highlight the breadth of quality education on offer. Having twice as many subjects ranked as last year shows the ongoing commitment of staff to constantly improve on what they do, he says. Professor Quigley says many of the ranked subjects are among the most popular at the university and students will be encouraged to know the education they are receiving is world class. The 10 subjects ranked in the top 200 are: Law; Education; Economics and Econometrics; Computer Science and Information Systems; Linguistics; Accounting and Finance; Communications and Media Studies; Business and Management Studies; Geography; Sociology.

ISIS and us - Free public lectures

Waikato University law and war specialist Professor Alexander Gillespie says by sending troops to Iraq, New Zealand's got itself stuck in the middle of a very complex ISIS problem.  Professor Gillespie will give two public lectures next month, one in Tauranga, the other in Hamilton, to outline the complexity of the ISIS situation and the reasons for and against New Zealand being involved. The professor says trying to combat ISIS is like playing whack-a-mole; you shut them down in one place and they pop up somewhere else. He warns we could end up fighting all over the world and thinks this is an issue that can only be solved by the United Nations. Professor Gillespie's lectures take place at Tauranga Boys' College on Thursday 7 May and the University of Waikato's Academy of Performing Arts on Thursday 14 May. Both lectures are free and start at 6pm. 

New ways to do business

Businesses should make it their business to improve the lives of others according to the University of Waikato's new professor of strategic management Kathryn Pavlovich. She's an advocate for people and businesses working collaboratively to make a positive difference to society through leadership and management practices. Professor Pavlovich researches and teaches Noetic wisdom, which is about knowing and understanding self and developing inner technologies that can transform. She'll be talking about it more at her Inaugural Professorial Lecture this month. Inaugural Professorial Lectures are the university's way of introducing its new professors to the community. Professor Pavlovich's lecture will take place on Tuesday 19 May at 6pm at the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts.

University provides economic boost

The University of Waikato generates $988 million annually in sales revenue for the New Zealand economy, up 5.3% from $938 million in 2013 and $860m in 2012.  Of the sales revenue generated, $822.81 is in the Core Waikato area (Hamilton city, Waipa and Waikato districts). The figures are in the 2014 Economic Impact Report, compiled by Dr Warren Hughes and released last week. It shows the university contributes 2.4% of the greater Waikato Regional Council economy and adds $497 million to national GDP. More than 5,500 jobs nationwide can be attributed to university operations while every dollar spent by the university or its students generates another 99 cents for Core Waikato businesses and a further 34 cents for the rest of the country. In the Bay of Plenty, the regional economy benefits by more than $9 million in revenue from spending by 834 students while the Tauranga campus helped create 59 jobs for the Bay of Plenty economy. Dr Hughes' report warns that falling dairy prices are likely to impact the region's economy and it is important the university's contributions be sustained.

Possible fault found

University of Waikato scientists have identified the existence of a possible fault under Hamilton. They say there is no need for concern and that much more work is needed to conclusively prove its existence. Drs Willem De Lange and Vicki Moon used existing evidence to form their estimate that any risk of the possible fault causing an earthquake is slight. However, they are applying for funding to carry out further research and answer two key questions: When did it last move and by how much? The pair say their work shows indications of a fault running roughly from the Gordonton area, north east of Hamilton towards Temple View in the south west. Without more work, it is almost impossible to tells its exact course, when it last moved, or by how much. The existence of a fault line under Hamilton would not surprise the pair, who say the reason it hasn't been found before is because no one has really looked.

From surf lifesaving to ruling the communication waves

A University of Waikato graduate who started her own public relations practice at the age of 19 is the winner of this year's Ted Zorn Waikato Alumni Award in Management Communication.
Jenni Cochrane, now 28, graduated with a Bachelor of Communication Studies in 2006 and is now acting communications manager for Matamata-Piako District Council. She will be among more than 50 Waikato  students of public relations and leadership communication whose academic and professional achievements will be celebrated at an awards evening hosted by Waikato's Department of Management Communication (MCOM) on Wednesday, 6 May. The Ted Zorn award recognises Jenni's success in using social media and other channels to boost levels of community engagement in the council's decision-making processes.

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