Rewi Newnham

Prof Rewi Newnham profile picture

Programme Director – Geography School of Geography, Environment and Earth Sciences


Teaching in 2020

Research interests

Quaternary environmental change, palaeoclimate, climate change, environmental archaeology, aerobiology

My research focuses on reconstructing changing vegetation and climate change in New Zealand during the Quaternary period (the last 2.6 million years). This is supported by broader research interests in Quaternary environmental change and palynology (pollen analysis).

A key goal is advancing an understanding of environmental change in New Zealand in the context of global change at critical times, such as the last ice age and the transition to the present warm interval.

My current research also involves investigating volcanic ash layers (tephra) both as a dating method and as a guide to volcanic hazards, recent sea level change, and the settlement history of New Zealand.

I also have extensive experience in monitoring airborne pollen in the UK and New Zealand which can provide essential information on seasonal allergic rhinitis (hayfever) and other respiratory disorders.


  • Level 4 Certificate in Te Ara Reo Maori  - Te Wananga o Aotearoa (2011)
  • Accreditation as a Teacher in Higher Education, Staff & Education Development Association - University of Plymouth (1994)
  • Certificate in Teaching & Learning In Higher Education - University of Plymouth (1994)
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Geographical Information Systems - University of Otago (1992)
  • PhD in Geology - University of Auckland (1991)
  • MSc in Quaternary Studies - City of London Polytechnic (1984)
  • BSc in Physical Geography - University of Auckland (1980)


Publications 1981 - Now


Teaching in 2020