NZMS and NZSA Presidents
From Divisional news: Department of Mathematics & Statistics staff Dr Matt Parry (left) and Professor David Bryant (right) are living proof that statisticians (Matt) and mathematicians (David) can very happily work together. Having collaborated on many funding and research projects, they are now also the President of the NZ Statistical Association (Matt) and NZ Mathematical Society (David)!
David says he put his hand up to be Vice-President, but two minutes later found himself as President after his predecessor, Professor Shaun Hendy, stepped down to focus on COVID-19 modelling with Te Pūnaha Matatini (TPM). Matt has also been involved in TPM chairing a review panel of modelling used to support COVID-19 decisions.
Both Matt and David say their respective associations have active education committees heavily engaged in curriculum overhauls happening at all levels of school education, and that both being in the same department makes it far easier to coordinate joint projects between the associations.
Nature Communications on Celebrating National DNA Day: Population Genomics
Phil Wilcox (Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairoa, Rongomaiwahine, Ngāti Rakaipaaka) features in an article by Nature Communications on Celebrating National DNA Day: Population Genomics. National DNA Day commemorates the discovery of the DNA double helix and the completion of the Human Genome Project. This year, Nature Communications and Communications Biology celebrate National DNA Day by highlighting researchers that have prioritized genomic studies in underrepresented groups.
April 25th marks National DNA Day, a chance to celebrate the initial discovery of the DNA double helix structure in 1953 and the completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003. This year, editors at Nature Communications and Communications Biology wanted to celebrate National DNA Day by highlighting researchers that have emphasized genomic analyses in historically underrepresented populations. Here, we asked researchers about their own achievements, the importance of diversity when pursuing genomic studies, and how to achieve better inclusivity in STEM.
Phil outlines what motivates him in his research, some the issues he has run into, and why appropriate genetic resources and governance are needed to deliver health outcomes for Māori from genomic technologies.
Pedro Rossetto wins NZMS Aitken student prize
NZMS Aitken Prize (Student Prize) Pedro Rossetto
The Society offers a prize for the best contributed talk by a student at the annual New Zealand Mathematics Colloquium. This prize is known as the Aitken Prize, in honour of the New Zealand born mathematician Alexander Craig Aitken. The Prize was first offered at the 1995 Colloquium held in conjunction with the Aitken Centenary Conference at the University of Otago. Candidates for the Prize give a talk on a topic in any branch of the mathematical sciences.
The winner in 2020 was Pedro Henrique Barboza Rossetto (University of Otago) for the talk "Chaos in Plane Fronted Gravitational Waves".
The prize consists of a cheque for NZ$500, accompanied by a certificate.