The Royal Society Te Apārangi has elected three University of Waikato academic leaders as Fellows.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic, Professor Robyn Longhurst, Professor of Economics, John Gibson, and Professor of Biological Sciences, Carolyn 'Kim' King are among researchers recognised with the prestigious award today. It acknowledges true international distinction in research and scholarship in the areas of science, technology and the humanities.

Professor Robyn Longhurst’s research on gender, space and ‘the body’ has transformed the way that human geographers and other social scientists understand people-place relationships. The concept of embodiment is now seen as integral to feminist research, as well as to all research on space and place.

Professor Robyn Longhurst.

Consistently challenging the canons of mainstream geography, Professor Longhurst has published five insightful books that provided distinctive interventions in international research and scholarship, and made visible the ways in which knowledge is produced. Earlier this year she received the award of Lauréat d’honneur from the International Geographical Union for her contributions to gender, social and cultural geography.

Professor Longhurst says the award is something she never expected. "I am greatly humbled by the honour. It would never have happened without all the support I receive from amazing colleagues who value what I do. I’m profoundly grateful to all those people.”

Professor John Gibson has been recognised as an outstanding economist who has made significant contributions to knowledge around migration, particularly from the Pacific, and about survey-based measurement of living standards.

Professor John Gibson.

He has led the Pacific Island-New Zealand Migration Study for over a decade to measure impacts of skilled, seasonal, and random ballot-based migration. His scholarship is recognised at the highest levels including the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He has made major contributions to public policy especially in the area of Pacific-New Zealand migration policies, and his work has become the new norm for design, measurement, and analysis.

Professor Carolyn 'Kim' King is a specialist in animal ecology, particularly of small rodents and mustelids. Her research covers the areas of ecology, behaviour and genetics and her impact includes contributions to conservation, and work on improved methods of monitoring and control of rodents and mustelids.

Professor Carolyn (Kim) King.

A pest management pioneer, the British Mammal Society awarded her their highest honour, the Mammal Society Medal, for her important work on mustelids and their predatory impacts on native species, combining fundamental and applied research. In addition to her research combining the latest technologies with extensive field observations and sampling, she is a committed science communicator, evidenced by her own writing and editorship of the Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand (1983-2001) and New Zealand Journal of Zoology (1991-2009, plus Senior Editor 2010-2015).

Professors Longhurst, Gibson and King join the Royal Society’s centenary cohort of Fellows, with next year marking 100 years of the awards taking place.

They also join a further 13 University of Waikato staff members and Emeritus Professors who are current Fellows of the Royal Society including:

  • Professor Ernie Kalnins
  • Professor David Lowe
  • Professor Ian Witten
  • Professor Les Oxley
  • Professor Linda Smith
  • Emeritus Professor Cam Nelson
  • Emeritus Professor Richard (Dick) Bedford
  • Emeritus Professor Hugh Morgan
  • Emeritus Professor Ian Pool
  • Emeritus Professor Robert Hannah
  • Emeritus Professor Roberta Farrell
  • Emeritus Professor Roy Daniel
  • Emeritus Professor Ted Glynn

Distinguished Alumni Award winner Professor Thomas Higham has been made an Honorary Fellow.

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