Rotorua Scientist Wins Travel Award

31 May 2007

A Rotorua scientist is off to the United States in August to present her research at an international conference, after winning a prestigious Fulbright Travel Award.

Dr Christine Todoroki - a senior scientist with Ensis, the unincorporated joint venture between Crown Research Institute Scion in Rotorua, and Australia’s CSIRO - will spend three weeks in the United States. Initially, she will present a paper at a conference in Oregon on her research into mathematical modelling of timber quality.

“This conference is attracting specialists from around the world. It’s an exciting opportunity to not only share the work we are doing in Rotorua, but also find out about latest international findings and methods,” Dr Todoroki says.

Following the conference, Dr Todoroki will visit the Pacific Northwest Research Station, also in Oregon, to collaborate with noted scientists.

“Over the years we have formed a close working relationship with scientists there. My visit will enable us to have more in-depth discussions and brain-storm about ways we can further explore forest processing activities to analyse the quality of the New Zealand and United States resources,” Dr Todoroki says.

While in the United States Dr Todoroki will also visit the World Forestry Centre. The Centre runs educational programmes on forestry, similar to Scion’s ‘Forests of Life’ education programme.

“Our science programme has the motto ‘Think Globally, Act Locally’ and has already been taken up by some New Zealand intermediate and high schools. I’ll be interested to see what we can learn from each other to help educate young people.”

Fulbright Travel Awards are offered to academics and professionals who have been invited to present papers in the United States. Only six awards are offered each year in New Zealand.

Dr Todoroki will leave for the United Sates on 4 August.