Prime Minister Helen Clark and Professor
Another link in
a network of excellence
The University came in for praise for innovation
from the Prime Minister Helen Clark in her speech at the opening of the
Auckland-based Centre for Social and Health Outcomes Research and Evaluation
on Friday 15 November.
Clark remarked on the University’s 75th celebrations and its tradition
of innovation, including the Albany e-centre, which she also opened. The
Prime Minister observed that Massey had achieved another first with the
appointment of Professor Judith Kinnear as Vice-Chancellor.
Most of her comments, however, were reserved for the excellence of the
SHORE Centre and the international achievements and reputation of its
director Professor Casswell. “Massey already makes a considerable
contribution to health and social research. The establishment of this
centre complements that in an outstanding way.” She congratulated
the University for attracting Professor Casswell’s team, most of
whom were previously with the University of Auckland.
The Prime Minister stressed the value of research by such centres as SHORE,
saying policy-making is frequently complicated by lobbying when facts
are required. “The areas in which the SHORE Centre works are of
particular importance now as we reassess the well-being of our young people.
New Zealand has always been regarded as a great place to bring up children
but we are becoming more aware now of the great stress on the young, particularly
Maori and Pacific Island young people and new immigrants. There is much
work to be done and I look forward to your contribution.”
his speech, Acting Vice-Chancellor Professor Graeme Fraser also noted
the breadth, experience and quality of the University’s work on
health and social policy issues, now further strengthened by the SHORE
Centre team. It was, he suggested, “a true network of excellence.”
Leading Massey researchers in the area include Dr Chris Cunningham (Wellington),
Professor Neil Pearce (Wellington) Professor Mason Durie and Professor
Robyn Munford (Palmerston North), Professor Casswell, Professor Paul Spoonley,
Dr Cindy Kiro and Associate Professor Marilyn Waring (Albany).
Professor Casswell drew attention to the
importance of the team’s work for and with ethnic groups. A current
project is a survey of Pacific drinking patterns using a telephone survey
in four Pacific languages.
The SHORE Centre has a partnership with Maori research group Te Ropu Whariki,
also established at the University this year, and led by Helen Moewaka
Barnes. The two research teams have expertise in fields as diverse as
alcohol and other drugs, Maori health research, the effects of location
on health, Maori identity, youth mental health, and nutrition and body