New Zealand Embassy Berlin, Germany
Chief Science Advisor Professor Sir Peter Gluckman strengthens science ties with Germany
Upon invitation from the German Federal Government, the Chief Science Advisor to the New Zealand Prime Minister, Professor Sir Peter Gluckman, paid a "timely, enjoyable and extremely useful" visit to Germany from 10-14 October 2011. During the visit, Sir Peter met with a number of government departments, research organisations and science advisory bodies in Berlin, Bonn and Munich.
In his talks with German State Secretary for Education and Research Dr Georg Schütte and other representatives of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as well as the Chancellor's Office, Sir Peter discussed current developments in the New Zealand and German science systems and possible new initiatives in the bilateral relationship. Sir Peter had valuable discussions with senior representatives of most German research (funding) organisations, including the Fraunhofer Society, the Max Planck Society, the German Research Association (DFG) and the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. Particularly insightful was the visit to selected German research institutes, such as the German Research Centre for Geosciences (GFZ) in Potsdam which has an ongoing collaboration with its New Zealand counterpart institute GNS Science.
Naturally, Sir Peter's visit also represented an excellent hook for this year's New Zealand-Germany Science Circle event. Hosted by the NZ Embassy in the inspiring German Physical Society's Magnus-Haus in Berlin, the evening centred on Sir Peter's address on "The Challenge of Communicating Complex Science to the Policy Maker and to the Public". The audience of around 50 German and New Zealand researchers as well as representatives from Government agencies and research organisations participated with great interest and enjoyed the opportunity to meet the German-New Zealand science community over a glass of NZ wine.