Charity network will grow with increased promotion

10 June 2014 A group of University of Canterbury students are keen to make Cantabrians fitter, not fatter, by helping a charity organisation. (read article)

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What is Geography all about?

What is Geography all about?

Information about Geography

‘My university papers added another dimension to my knowledge...’

Penny Goddard BSc in Geography
Avalanche Forecaster, Canadian Avalanche Centre
(read profile)


Jeremy SeverinsenNew Masters student creats crowdsourcing competition

Jeremy Severinsen is a UC masters student in Geographic Information Science, and an employee of Land Information New Zealand (LINZ). Jeremy's masters research seeks to establish a model for assessing trust in volunteered geographic information (or crowdsourced geographic information), to allow its integration into existing authoritative datasets, and for its reliable future reuse.

Jeremy has developed a crowdsourcing competition - "Building Our Footprints", which is a collaborative project between LINZ, Environment Canterbury, and UC that deploys Jeremy's trust model to enable high school students to voluntarily generate a building footprint dataset for the Canterbury region. The Competition runs from 28 July - 28 August 2014. For more information or to register and participate, visit.

Forty years for Anna in GeographyAnna

Anna Petrie, our Department Administrator, has been in the Geography Department for forty years: an achievement marked by the department at a morning tea in the Learning Space on July 4. A large number of staff and students joined Anna for the occasion, with scones, jam and cream made by Elizabeth and Garth Cant, and a chocolate cake arranged by Andy.

For his speech, the current Head of Department, Andy Sturman, had of course unearthed Anna’s letter of appointment. He declined to embarrass her with a reminder of her starting salary, but she certainly remembered: $3050. In reply Anna talked about how as a new secretary, she along with all the Geography staff and students moved [decanted] from the town site (now the Arts Centre) to Ilam, matched just this week by another decant into the Geography/Psychology lab block for earthquake repairs to the Geography Staff Block.

In those forty years, Anna – seated at the front of the photograph with Andy – has worked with seven Heads, starting with Barry Johnston (1966-90), who appointed her. Barry is on the left, next to Jane Soons (1990-93), then Bob Kirk (1993-98), Eric Pawson (1998-2005), Wendy Lawson (2005-11) and Simon Kingham (2011). 

Melbourne Geography Conference July 2014

The 2014 joint conference of the Institute of Australian Geographers and the New Zealand Geographical Society took place at the University of Melbourne between July 29 and July 2. About four hundred geographers from around Australia and New Zealand attended, including a small group of staff and students from Canterbury.

It was a busy and well run affair, with up to ten concurrent sessions.  The opening keynote from Jamie Peck (UBC) was followed by two others each day, including the Journal of Geography in Higher Education Annual Lecture on the Tuesday delivered by Eric Pawson. His theme was ‘Classrooms without borders: new spaces and places of learning’, and he explored and questioned various forms of ‘post-disaster pedagogies’ developed at Canterbury since the earthquakes. There is a link to the lecture here.

The University of Melbourne is close to Lygon Street and its array of restaurants. On the last night, a memorable conference dinner was held at the State Library: grand setting and great food. 

Dramatic change in Canterbury's demographics

Dr Malcolm Campbell and Dr John McCarthy comment on the change in Canterbury's demographics as revealed in the 2013 census. For the full story.

Dr Malcom Campbell comments on latest deprivation findings in Canterbury

Find full article here

Esri Young Scholar Award for UC Geog Student

 Stuart Reynolds Master’s Thesis on Resilience to Food Insecurity: Measuring Access to Food in the Urban Environment has gained him the 2014 ESRI Yong Scholar award. The award means Staurt will be wingin his way to San Diego for the Esri Education GIS and International User Conference. View his poster.

Frontiers Abroad

Frontiers Abroad is an educational exchange program that gives students from US colleges and universities a remarkable learning adventure in New Zealand and the Pacific.
Students cross oceans and mountains, learning about climate, biology, geology  and environmental science in New Zealand and the Cook Islands.

A multidisciplinary group of UC academics from Geography, Geology, Biological Sciences teach into Frontiers Abroad, giving this program a strong intellectual basis.
Field studies on Banks Peninsula, the Kaikoura coast, the Cook Islands, the Southern Alps and NZ's wild west coast give students a broad perspective - and a close-up, hands-on learning experience. Check out our video on the program in the Geography videos section below.

Why Geography is the best subject to study at University... ever!

Recent articles that are worth a read if you are contemplating doing Geography.

Geography Videos