In February, Professor Cheryl Praeger, immediate past Foreign Secretary of the Academy, travelled to New Zealand for the centenary celebrations of the Royal Society Te Apārangi (which means ‘group of experts’ in Māori). Celebrations marked the 100th anniversary of the first admission of Fellows in 1919 and included an afternoon of lectures by new Fellows (Ngā Ahurei a Te Apārangi). A gala dinner at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa included a formal admission ceremony for the new Fellows, and a centenary symposium, ‘Inclusive Excellence’.
At the dinner, a birthday cake was cut by the oldest Fellow, geophysicist Dr Eddie Robertson OBE CBE FRSNZ, who was born before the first Royal Society Fellows were admitted.
Academy Fellow, Professor Warrick Couch, was admitted to honorary Fellowship of the Royal Society.
Professor Praeger attended the Science 20 (S20) meetings in Tokyo in early March. The gathering of S20 national academies was organised to provide scientific input for the upcoming G20 2019 meeting in Japan, with a statement given to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on ‘Threats to Coastal and Marine Ecosystems and Conservation of the Ocean Environment’.
Also in March, Professor Praeger attended the first anniversary of the formation of the Sri Lankan National Chapter of the UN Organisation for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD).
Professor Praeger delivered a plenary lecture on ‘Women in Science: an Australian perspective’ as part of anniversary sessions in Colombo on International Women’s Day. She noted the efforts made in Australia to promote gender equity and diversity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
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