Professor Juliet A. Gerrard, FRSNZ

Keynote speaker

Professor Juliet Gerrard, Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor

At Crazy & Ambitious 2, Juliet’s keynote is on Tuesday 21 May during the session: Whakahou: Restoration trajectory: are we all going in the same direction?

Juliet trained at Oxford University, where she completed a First Class Honours degree in Chemistry and a DPhil in Biological Chemistry.

In 1993, she was appointed as a research scientist at Crop & Food Research, where her multidisciplinary research portfolio included a substantial element of applied research in the food science area.

She was appointed as a Lecturer in Biochemistry at the University of Canterbury in 1998, where she became Professor and Co-Director of the Biomolecular Interaction Centre.

In 2014, she moved to the University of Auckland as a Professor in the School of Biological Sciences and the School of Chemical Sciences and is now the Associate Dean for Research in the Faculty of Science.

Juliet’s research has a broad base and is interdisciplinary, cutting across biochemistry, chemistry, health, agricultural and food science and biomaterial design. It also incorporates a full spectrum of fundamental and applied research, ranging from Marsden projects to research for industry, and includes collaborations in the UK, USA and Australia.

From 2012-2016 she held a Callaghan Innovation Industry and Outreach Fellowship (at 50% FTE) focussed on creating an integrated research programme across Callaghan Innovation and the Universities of Canterbury and Auckland. During this time she also founded a start-up company, Hi-Aspect Ltd, which went on to receive seed funding from a private investor in 2017.

Juliet has over 150 publications, as well as three books. She won a National Teaching Award for Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching in 2004 and has served on FRST panels and domain reviews. She enjoyed her role as Chair of the Cellular, Molecular and Physiological Biology Marsden Panel and Deputy Chair of the Marsden Council prior to being appointed Chair in 2012. She stepped down from this role early in 2018, having overseen an increase in the fund from around $54 million to over $80 million and steered the Marsden Fund Council through the creation of the Fund’s first investment plan.

Juliet has had an increasing interest in governance and served on the Board of Directors of Plant & Food Research Ltd from 2013-2018. Juliet has resigned her roles on Boards to take up this position and won’t apply for research funds in New Zealand while she holds the role.

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