Opinion and Insights

With Pride month coming to an end, it’s a great time to reflect on the work that Werry Workforce Whāraurau does year-round to support youth. 

In less than a year, the world has a number of available licensed Covid-19 vaccines – this is incredible progress. Nikki Turner summarises how it was done.

Families’ cultural and religious beliefs, health literacy, socioeconomic status, geographic location, and access to transport all play important roles in the health and wellbeing of children in the world, especially in Aotearoa-New Zealand. 

Here’s an impressive stat from the NZ XR Market Report: By 2025 the augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and extended reality (XR) industry is projected to grow to more than $40B USD globally by 2025, from $15B USD in 2020. 

When a shortage of locally skilled workers in the wine industry was ringing alarm bells for future harvests thanks to COVID-19 border restrictions, the University of Auckland’s Centre for Automation and Robotic Engineering Science (CARES) sharpened its focus on how it could help with the pressing need.

The Empathic Computing Laboratory (ECL) is researching how new technology can be used to create systems that enhance understanding between people that are face to face or remote from one another. 

Our commercialisation team at UniServices is astute at spotting the real deal from shiny distractions and when it comes to opportunities in the XR space this is essential. We had a chat with UniServices Commercialisation Director Stephen Flint, a manager of the University of Auckland Inventors’ Fund, to learn more about what they are seeing in this space.

Learn about Dr Pau Medrano-Gracia's role as a Commercialisation Manager at UniServices and how he works with researchers at the University of Auckland as well as industry and government partners to support bringing ideas to life. 

Over the last 50 years, we can confidently say we are all living a little bit longer. Intergenerational families and communities are once more commonplace, and getting older doesn’t automatically relegate you to a rest home.  

However, with these longer lives there is still no guarantee of better health, and there is evidence of inequities in gender and ethnicity throughout.

You are never too old to benefit from quitting smoking – that’s the message from Associate Professor Natalie Walker, Leader of the Tobacco and Addiction research group at  the National Institute for Health Innovation (NIHI), managed by UniServices.  

Increased longevity presents a challenge in ensuring ongoing quality of life and in maximising health and wellbeing through the life course. The team at UniServices hosted a webinar to look at how researchers at the University of Auckland address different ageing challenges in their work – from enhancing mobility to tackling loneliness, exercising pelvic floor muscles and working with kaumatua.

UniServices helps to identify, protect and commercialise the University of Auckland’s intellectual property, ranked in the top 150 of all universities worldwide. A reflection of the scale and quality of the University’s research, in the last six years we have tallied 821 invention disclosures, and 395 patent licenses. 

Learn about UniServices Intellectual Property Advisor Tim Stirrup and the advice he has for researchers on how to protect and develop their work. 

As a proud member of both Momentum and Return On Science committees, I have a front-row view of how the programme provides a rich framework for both committee members and entrepreneurs to grow their capability. Launching another committee is a testament to the programme’s success, and today I want to share a little more with you about what Momentum means to us at UniServices and why we do it.

Velocity, a student-led, globally renowned entrepreneurship development programme of the University of Auckland, was launched in 2003. Stephen Flint, UniServices’ Director of Commercialisation, has been involved with the programme for almost 15 years. We asked Stephen about his experience with Velocity and the importance of pursuing ideas. 

New technology to make recycling plastics easier and cheaper is the first step in a plan University of Auckland researchers have to reduce New Zealand’s rate of generating plastic waste which, per capita, is one of the highest in the world.

Distinguished Professor Peter Hunter was recently recognised in the University's Research Awards, winning a Vice-Chancellor's Commercialisation Medal sponsored by UniServices. He talks about his plan to grow Auckland Bioengineering Institute (ABI), known globally for its excellence. 

Werry Workforce Whāraurau, a centre supported by UniServices for professional development teaching evidence-based interventions in the child and adolescent mental health sector, is a nimble team of 25 around New Zealand. Pre-COVID-19, travelling up and down the country was an essential part of the way they worked.

You may have seen it in the news: a group of Auckland Tech entrepreneurs have banded together, in partnership with the University of Auckland’s Department of Exercise Science and Medical Technologies Centre of Research Excellence, and have been awarded funding to conduct clinical trials for their new solution with potential to help the COVID-19 fight.

Behind the scenes, UniServices Business Development Manager Josh Alden brought “the business side of the equation” to assist project lead scientist Associate Professor Nick Gant in the proposal’s successful progression.

How Annabelle Collins is making fantasy worlds a commercial reality with the support of Momentum, a programme powered by UniServices which provides facilitated access to commercialisation resources, networks and expertise to directly increase the quantum and quality of commercial opportunities arising in New Zealand.

Karen Carter, General Manager at UniServices' National Institute of Health for Health Innovation (NIHI), shares what she's learned about Zoom fatigue (substitute Zoom with teams, skype etc) and how we can address it.