Summer Research Scholarships

Summer Research Scholarships offer a unique opportunity for organisations, academics, and students to work together in research over the summer trimester.

If you’re a student in at least your third year of study and are interested and skilled in research, you could spend the summer trimester supporting a research project—gaining valuable skills and a scholarship in the process.

Summer Research Scholarships offer a unique opportunity for students to gain experience in research and get an insight into what studying for a research degree involves. Each scholarship gives you the experience of working with established researchers under the supervision of an academic staff member or a research team.

Please see below for a full list of the Summer Research projects that are available at Wellington School of Business and Government over the 2021/2022 summer.

Applications open 6 September 2021 and close Monday 20 September 2021 at 4:30pm.

Forecasting migration flows in New Zealand

Scholarship code: 500

This project would involve conducting a literature review on models used to forecast migration, and collecting data and building a simple forecasting model for migration flows into and out of New Zealand. Depending on time and the applicant's ability, this could be extended into a vector autoregression model. The ideal candidate will have studied some econometrics at university, be comfortable manipulating data and have some knowledge of EViews, Matlab or a similar programming language. Project will be based at Te Tai Ōhanga The Treasury, with a second supervisor based in the Forecasting Team.

Supervisor: Robert Kirkby

Improving understanding of New Zealand's strategic place in the global economy

Scholarship code: 501

Improving New Zealand's International connections are widely considered to be one avenue to improve New Zealand's poor productivity performance and thus our economic growth over the long term. The OECD has estimated that about half of NZ's weak productivity performance is due to poor international connections. MFAT estimates that productivity in the tradables sector (exporting, importing and import-competing businesses) is about 50% higher than the non-tradables sector. However, the contribution of the tradables sector to the economy has been trending down for more than two decades. This has also come during a period of time in which global trade has expanded significantly.

In order to help understand why NZ’s trade to GDP ratio (tradables sector) has steadily declined, we propose a summer research project to investigate this issue. This would include:

  • Quantitative analysis of the issue - compiling and constructing descriptive statistics to help establish some core facts and insights into relative growth in sectors of the economy that might help explain the declining trade to GDP ratio. It could also involve more advanced quantitative techniques, depending on the direction MBIE, MFAT and the student wish to take this work.
  • A comparison to other countries and exploring the drivers of strong global trade growth over the last two decades and the extent to which NZ has been able to participate in this growth.
  • Exploring theoretical arguments that might shed light on the matter. This should include referring back to economic theory on the extent to which a country trades and engages internationally. It would also include exploring recent commentary on the issue, including the potential role immigration has had on the relative expansion of the tradable vs non-tradable sectors in NZ.
  • Exploring what current events and policy settings (the pandemic, changing global trade patterns, domestic economic developments) might mean going forward. This may also involve considering possible policy responses.

The project would naturally suit a student studying economics or with an economic/quantitative background. We don’t envisage the work requiring deep technical/analytical skills, but a good grasp (or ability to grasp) economic concepts and manipulate data would be desirable.

Supervisor: Siah Hwee Ang

User research and testing for subject pages

Scholarship code: 502

The University's recruitment information about subject and qualifications is a critical tool for prospective students (2.3M page views per year). We are working to improve this content and would like a student to undertake user research and testing with prospective postgraduate students so we can better understand their needs.

Supervisor: Jane Young

Evaluation of Trustworthiness in Health Information Systems

Scholarship code: 503

This project allows a student to work directly with the research team of the Veracity Mission Spearhead project and contribute to understanding trust, truthfulness and authenticity in digital interactions. Find out more about the Veracity Mission Spearhead project.

Supervisor: Markus Luczak-Roesch

RWNZ Archives Project

Scholarship code: 504

Rural Women New Zealand seeks an intern with a keen interest in working on its Archives Project. This internship would be based at our National Office in Wellington and would include listing our existing collection and locating records and items held privately and in local and national repositories. The applicant will also research the range of options to preserve the archives with a focus on enabling access. A final report will be required for presentation to the RWNZ National Board.

Supervisor: Anne Goulding

Doing business with Latin America

Scholarship code: 505

The Latin America Centre of Asia-Pacific Excellence delivers programmes and initiatives that help New Zealanders engage and do business with Latin America. In 2022 we will be delivering a new extracurricular programme for businesses. As part of that programme, we will be presenting insights on a range of topic that exporters have identified as critical for success in Latin America: logistics; supply chains & distribution issues; digital trade; regulatory and tax hurdles; legal and transparency issues; managing political, economic and security risks; and the importance of local advice, presence and partnerships. To produce an optimal programme component, we need to ensure we are have fully captured the experience of New Zealand exporters in these matters. The purpose of this summer scholarship is for the relevant student to undertake background research to produce that outcome.

Contact: Matthew O’Meagher

New Zealand, Latin America and trans-Pacific policy and trade environments

Scholarship code: 506

The Latin America Centre of Asia-Pacific Excellence delivers programmes and initiatives that help New Zealanders engage and do business with Latin America. In 2022 we will be delivering three seminars for businesses, policymakers, students and the media that highlight existing connections between New Zealand and Latin America and point the way towards deeper collaborations. The topics for these seminars will be “New Zealand, Australia and Latin America”, “New Zealand, Latin America and multilateral collaboration”, and “50 Years of New Zealand-Chile relations”. To produce an optimal set of events we need to ensure we are up to date with the full set of economic and political relationships relevant to each project. The purpose of this summer scholarship is to undertake background research to produce that outcome.

Contact: Matthew O’Meagher

Rights research and clearance of Te Papa’s peer-reviewed journals

Scholarship code: 507

Project with Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa

Do you fancy yourself a detective? Perhaps you have a passion for identifying NZ researchers, scientists, historians and academics? Te Papa is embarking on a project to digitise and openly digitally publish articles from our three peer reviewed journals to aid future research and study. The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa's peer reviewed journals have spanned the life of our museum operation - the past 155 years. Help us determine the rights status of each author and article, negotiate copyright licences, and track and update the associated metadata to make digital versions easily findable by search engines and the public. This will involve research on identifying and noting biographic information on authors and their relationship with Te Papa to confirm the copyright status and current copyright owner. Working with Te Papa's Rights Manager, you'll bring a research enthusiasm for identifying people. We'll teach you what you need to know about the copyright process. Come work with us to help make Te Papa's published research more available and findable.

Supervisor: Jennifer Campbell-Meier