Tara McAllister (Victoria University of Wellington), “An Indigenous Scientist’s Journey Towards Interdisciplinarity” (BIOMES)

Event time: 
Wednesday, October 4, 2023 - 12:00pm
Online via Zoom, and Kroon Hall (195 Prospect Street) See map
Event description: 
About the Seminar: 
In this seminar, Dr. McAllister will begin by presenting some of her research that investigates the physicochemical drivers of Phormidium proliferations in New Zealand rivers. Phormidium is genus of benthic cyanobacteria, with a global distribution, that produces a range of cyanotoxins. Animal deaths linked to ingestion of microbial mats containing anatoxin-producing Phormidium species have been reported in France, the Netherlands, the United States of America, and New Zealand. Over the past two decades, there has been an increase in the prevalence and extent of Phormidium proliferations in New Zealand rivers. Dr. McAllister will present the results of a streamside mesocosm experiment, which aimed to investigate the interactive effects of nutrients and flow on Phormidium growth.
Moving on from talking about the colonisation of toxic cyanobacteria, Dr McAllister will then present research from her postdoctoral studies, which broadly aims to (re)indigenise science. Globally, there is growing recognition of the value that Indigenous people and knowledge bring to ecology and science more broadly. Internationally, New Zealand is seen as a leader in the development of Indigenous research and in settler-Indigenous relations. However, despite increasing acknowledgement that Mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge) is a highly valuable source of information, New Zealand continues to miss out on the globally recognised benefits that Indigenous knowledge brings to science. I will discuss how Mātauranga Māori has been used alongside ecology and provide insights of how we can use the best of both worlds to grow knowledge and address pressing environmental issues.
About the Series:
Over the last twelve years, the Yale School of the Environment has held a weekly seminar series, called BIOMES, which has been the School’s flagship forum for bringing cutting-edge research and impactful work to the community. BIOMES stands for ‘Bridging Issues & Optimizing Methods in Environmental Studies”
The series is a community-sourced and student-led effort designed to bring different perspectives to YSE’s main stage. 
Free but register in advance