Tag Archives: research

Words and worlds collide

What’s the difference between a poet and an astronomer? Nothing, if you’re UC astrophysicist Dr Michele Bannister.

Dr Bannister is an expert in the discovery and characterisation of minor planets in the solar system. She’s been involved in the discovery of more than 800 minor planets and even had an asteroid named after her! She’s also an avid creative writer. The poet, planetary astronomer, hunter of new and strange worlds, and self-described ‘connoisseur of fuzzy dots of light’ is our latest guest on UC Science Radio.

Check out Michele’s interview here, or on Spotify | Stitcher | Youtube | Apple Podcasts

Professorial Lecture Series

Celebrating Fresh Thinking:

Professorial Lecture Series

Join me in celebrating the very substantive contribution to academe made by Professor Mukundan Ramakrishnan and Professor Andreas Willig in the first presentation in the Professorial Lecture Series for 2020.

Date:               Thursday, 2 July, from 4.30 – 6.00 p.m.

Location:        E14 – Engineering Core

I encourage all staff and postgraduate students to attend this lecture, to actively support our new Professors, and take the opportunity to appreciate the fantastic research being undertaken in parts of the university we may be less familiar with.

Presentation details:

 “Digital Pathology Research in the NZ Context” – Presented by Professor Mukundan Ramakrishnan, Department of Computer Science & Software Engineering.

In the rapidly growing field of digital pathology, several new image analysis and machine learning algorithms are currently being developed for automated extraction and quantification of tissue biomarkers used in pathological evaluations. The application of digital technology in pathology has the potential to transform care of breast cancer patients through improved pathology workflow, early and accurate disease diagnosis and enhanced disease management.  However, despite numerous benefits digital pathology offers for routine diagnosis, its uptake in clinical practice in New Zealand has been slow.  Our research group (Computer Graphics and Medical Image Analysis group, Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering) has established strong research collaborations with anatomical pathologists specialising in breast cancer, and is at the forefront of research and development in this field in New Zealand. This lecture gives an overview of the projects undertaken by the group in the past few years, some of the key accomplishments, and the current state of research.  This lecture also looks at the challenges in the adoption of digital pathology implementation in clinical practice, and discusses how some of the emerging technologies could be used in future for the transition of digital pathology from 2D to 3D tissue specimen analysis.

“Past and Upcoming Research in Wireless Networking” – Presented by Professor Andreas Willig, Department of Computer Science & Software Engineering.

 In the first part of this talk I will focus on wireless body sensor networks (WBSNs), a technology in which a group of sensors is attached to the human body to collect vital signals. These sensors communicate wirelessly amongst each other, using standardized technologies like the IEEE 802.15.4 personal area network. It is of critical importance that this communication is reliable, but unfortunately WBSNs can easily experience interference from other technologies (like WiFi) or from other WBNs using the same technology. We will discuss results on the impact of interference and some ways to manage it.

The second part of this talk is more futuristic. In recent years, drones or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have found numerous applications, e.g. in delivery of goods, aerial photography, asset inspection and other fields. So far, most of these applications have relied on single drones. There is now growing interest in going beyond this and to consider applications of collaborating swarms or formations of drones. We look into some of the communications / networking and coordination challenges that need to be solved to support networks of hundreds / thousands / ten-thousands .. of drones.

Professor Ian Wright

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research | Tumu Tuarua Rangahau

UC membership in The Conversation gains momentum

By now, we hope you’ve heard the exciting news that UC is a member of The Conversation, which has the primary and lofty goal of “democratizing knowledge.”

The Conversation is an independent, non-profit publisher of commentary and analysis, authored by academics and edited by journalists for the general public. These pieces are syndicated by media outlets across the world.

In addition to the measurable visibility through readership of The Conversation and its network of re-publishers (national and international journalists and media outlets), authors report significant increases in requests for further academic collaborations, support for current or future grants or funding support, citations for scholarly articles, influence on policy by decision-makers and requests for media interviews (radio, print and TV).

Some recent UC articles include:

If you want to know more or need support to submit an article contact your dedicated communications advisor or Margaret Agnew:

Breeze RobertsonArts
Aleisha BlakeBusiness and Law
Breeze RobertsonEducation, Health and Human Development
Hannah SeeleyEngineering
Corrina DonaldsonScience


How it works

  • Academic staff submit brief “pitches” for possible stories to The Conversation editors, in response to topic-specific requests, or proactively to share research, scholarship or creative work of interest to the public. Pitches can be made directly to editors through a simple online form, or with facilitation from their dedicated Communications Advisor*.
  • The UC Communications team also receives an expert callout email each day from The Conversation and will follow up directly with relevant academics to see if they can write an article.
  • Once a pitch is accepted, academics collaborate directly with editors from The Conversation to develop the article. Once complete, the piece is published in the online edition of The Conversation, included in the outlet’s outbound emails and made available to a network of potential re-publishers. UC Communications also shares content by its authors through appropriate UC channels, including UC News, e-newsletters and social media. 
  • As with other news media, “pitches” need to be topical and timely. Once accepted the articles need to be quickly written and approved for publication, otherwise the moment is lost.
  • Authors have access to an analytics dashboard and can see the number of reads the article has received, the geographic location of readers and where the piece has been republished. Dashboards also monitor all engagement on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn as well as comments on the site, which authors can respond to, providing an opportunity to network with other academics.

Questions? Feel free to reach out to Jayne Austin at jayne.austin@canterbury.ac.nz or Margaret Agnew at margaret.agnew@canterbury.ac.nz, Communications and Events: https://www.canterbury.ac.nz/communications/