Funding boost to increase diversity in science

Research, Science and Innovation Minister Megan Woods today announced the Government is allocating $6 million “towards programmes that encourage diversity in science”.

This policy is aimed at engineering changes in the science workplace, to encourage gender and ethnicity considerations being taken into account when attracting people into science careers and jobs

Speaking at the opening of the University of Canterbury’s new Beatrice Tinsely building, Dr Woods said the Government is focussed on supporting research organisations

” … to continue the great work they are doing to break down the barriers that exist for under-represented groups in the science system”.

This extra support would help more research and science institutions

” … to take ownership and break down the structural and societal barriers that exist for under-represented groups in the science system, including Māori and Pasifika groups and women,” says Megan Woods.

“To achieve our ambitious goals we must guarantee that we are capturing the very best ideas and talent. This can only be done if all groups are given the opportunities to take part in the science system. The programmes we are funding will help to identify, spread and embed best practice across the sector and make equity, diversity and inclusion everyday practice.”

One key initiative to be funded includes an institutional equity, diversity and inclusion capacity-building grant.

“The grant will help organisations that perform research, to develop and implement projects and resources that promote diversity and inclusion in the science workforce. More details on the grant will be announced later this year.”

Dr Woods said she wants to see a science research system

” … that attracts, promotes and reflects our people – one that asks the hard questions and tackles the big challenges. The investment that I have announced today will support research organisations to achieve this vision.”  

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Diversity in Science Statement was launched last year.

Dr Woods said this is a step towards achieving the long-term ambition for a research workforce that reflects the diversity that can be found in New Zealand.

Source:  Minister of Research, Science and Innovation 

Author: Bob Edlin

Editor of AgScience Magazine and Editor of the AgScience Blog

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