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Deadline approaches for $50,000 Critic and Conscience of Society Award

08 February 2022 | news

Aotearoa New Zealand’s university academics have until the end of the month to be in with a chance to receive a $50,000 grant as a winner of the latest Critic and Conscience of Society Award.

The award, sponsored by philanthropic trust The Gama Foundation, aims to encourage academics to fulfil their role under the Education and Training Act 2020, which requires universities to act as the critic and conscience of society.

Previous winners have been Professor Alexander Gillespie and Associate Professor Siouxsie Wiles (2021, pictured with The Gama Foundation's Grant and Marilyn Nelson), Professor Michael Baker and Associate Professor Anita Gibbs (2020), Professor Andrew Geddis (2019), Professor Ann Brower (2018) and Dr Mike Joy (2017).

The award is given each year to an academic staff member who, in the opinion of a panel of three independent judges, has done more in the past two calendar years than any other applicant to provide the public with independent, expert commentary on an issue or issues affecting the New Zealand community or future generations.

The grant of $50,000 is to help with research, conferences and other work-related expenses. Winners are not eligible to apply again until five years have elapsed. The winner of the 2022 award will receive their grant and a framed certificate at a special function later this year.

The closing date for applications is 28 February.

The award is administered by Universities New Zealand – Te Pōkai Tara. It is not necessary to be nominated and academics can apply via an online form. Applicants’ queries should be emailed to