$12m funding for new research projects

Grants awarded to 19 projects in 2023 Marsden Fund round.

Nineteen projects led by researchers from Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington have been awarded grants this year from Te Pūtea Rangahau a Marsden, the Marsden Fund.

A total of $11.97 million will be provided for the 19 projects over three years.

Ten projects receive standard grants, which provide funding of up to $960,000. The remaining nine projects receive fast-start grants of $360,000. Fast-start grants are designed to support early career researchers.

Recipients of standard grants are:

  • Alice Rogers, School of Biological Sciences. Project: Uncovering the functioning and importance of temperate mesophotic ecosystems, $942,000
  • Clint Oakley, School of Biological Sciences. Project: What makes a coral “super”? Challenging the oxidative theory of coral bleaching to solve the coral reef crisis, $942,000
  • Emily Parker, Ferrier Research Institute. Project: Deciphering the molecular details of unusual fungal biosynthetic enzymes, $941,000
  • Jeff Shima, School of Biological Sciences. Project: Shining a light on lanternfishes to reveal hidden linkages between ecosystems, $942,000
  • Jeremy Owen, School of Biological Sciences. Project: Awakening dormant drug biosynthesis by decoding regulatory gene networks, $941,000
  • Jo Smith, School of English, Film, Theatre, Media and Communication, and Art History. Project: Seeding hope—the diverse roles of Indigenous women in food systems, $861,000
  • Kai Chen, Robinson Research Institute. Project: Capturing the fleeting—tracking photophysics in organic LED and laser materials with ultrafast photoluminescence spectroscopy, $926,000
  • Noam Greenberg, School of Mathematics and Statistics. Project: Connections between computability theory, effective descriptive set theory, and geometric measure theory, $712,000
  • Tirta Susilo, School of Psychology. Project: Sensory hypothesis of developmental prosopagnosia, $870,000
  • Victoria Chen, School of Linguistics and Applied Language Studies. Project: From roots to branches—language evolution in the Austronesian family tree, $653,000.

Fast-start grants have been awarded to:

  • Adam RH Stevens, School of Physical and Chemical Sciences. Project: Next-generation galaxy formation modelling for radio surveys
  • Ayca Arkilic, School of History, Philosophy, Political Science and International Relations. Project: Embracing Islam—conversion, identity and belonging in Aotearoa New Zealand
  • Bonnie Etherington, School of English, Film, Theatre, Media and Communication, and Art History. Project: Literatures of environment and disability from Oceania
  • Brendan Harding, School of Mathematics and Statistics. Project: Mathematical modelling of inertial lift driven particle migration in complex microfluidic devices with applications to periodic duct geometries
  • George Parker, School of Health. Project: Inclusion through difference—towards a new ethics of engagement with takatāpui/LGBTIQ+ parents and their families/whānau
  • Liam Martin, School of Social and Cultural Studies. Project: Prisons without walls—from incarceration to e-carceration in Aotearoa New Zealand
  • Louise McMillan, School of Mathematics and Statistics. Project: Unsupervised clustering of complex mixed-type data via a genetic case study
  • Ohad Peleg, School of Biological Sciences. Project: Examining ecosystem stability in multidimensional space—what drives ecosystem stability now and in the future?
  • Tara McAllister, School for Science in Society. Project: Vision Mātauranga—is it past its use-by date?

The Marsden Fund is administered by the Royal Society Te Apārangi. In 2023, total funding awarded nationally was $83.59 million.