The University of Waikato - Te Whare Wananga o WaikatoThe University of Waikato - Te Whare Wananga o Waikato

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Centre for Biodiversity and Ecology Research


The Centre for Biodiversity and Ecology Research facilitates a coordinated, integrated approach to biodiversity and ecology research, consultancy, education and advocacy. ‘Biodiversity’ here includes the diversity of genes, species, populations, communities and ecosystems, and ‘Ecology’ has been added to emphasise not only the intricate relationships among organisms but also those between organisms and the physical environment.

In particular, the Centre addresses the need for

  • cross-disciplinary team approaches e.g., using combinations of genetics, ecology, systematics, biochemistry and physiology.
  • overcoming traditional barriers between terrestrial, freshwater and marine system research and consultancy.
  • spanning the full range from fundamental and strategic research to applied research.
  • working closely with end-users and communities to ensure beneficial environmental outcomes.
  • working with Māori to determine research needs, including ecosystems and species of relevance to Māori.
  • enhancing biodiversity and ecology knowledge capability via education programmes.

The Centre’s emphasis is on New Zealand’s indigenous biodiversity and natural ecosystems because the long history of evolutionary isolation has created highly distinctive and unique biota and ecosystems. The Centre describes and assesses biodiversity, researches how organisms and ecosystems function, how genes, biota and ecosystems might be conserved or sustainably managed, and how to restore damaged or degraded ecosystems.

The Centre’s geographical focus is the Waikato region and the wider North Island but it also has important research and consultancy links with closely related overseas ecosystems and environments e.g., Pacific Islands, Antarctica and Australia.

The Centre hosts a Foundation for Research Science and Technology funded Outcome Based Investment focusing on lake and urban ecological restoration. The research leaders are Bruce Clarkson (urban restoration), David Hamilton (lake restoration) and Brendan Hicks (pest fish management).

The Centre is located within the Department of Biological Sciences and most of the staff are housed together in the top floor of R Block, specially developed to facilitate the aims of the Centre. Access is via Gate 9, Hillcrest Road. The website address for the Centre is http://cber.bio.waikato.ac.nz. E-mail addresses for all the staff and information on research projects and other activities can be obtained there.

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