Landcare Research - Manaaki Whenua

Landcare-Research -Manaaki Whenua

Science excellence & collaboration

Winners of the Shorland Medal: Penny Fisher, Bruce Warburton, Peter Sweetapple, Graham Nugent, Dave Morgan. Image - Tom Fraser

Winners of the Shorland Medal: Penny Fisher, Bruce Warburton, Peter Sweetapple, Graham Nugent, Dave Morgan. Image - Tom Fraser

Goal: Landcare Research is recognised nationally and internationally for excellent science collaborative research with CRIs, universities and other organisations, including those overseas.

Goal: Landcare Research's science excellence is enhanced, and opportunities are realised for the benefit of New Zealand, by managing and leveraging international connections.

In recent years, New Zealand science has progressed from a highly competitive to a more collaborative culture. This trend has facilitated the ‘best team’ approach through national research centres, networks and hubs that pool capability in particular science areas. In addition, we collaborate with many overseas partners on international projects that also benefit New Zealand.

Benchmarking our science excellence

A reputation for science excellence allows us to partner with the world’s best research organisations. We use the Thompson Reuters’ Incites™ database to benchmark the quality of our science publications (output and impact) in our key research areas. Bibliometric analyses provide independent verification that our science is highly regarded and also allows us to track trends in our publication.

From 1992 to 2013, Incites™ indexed 3,603 publications with Landcare Research staff as lead- or co-authors, which have been cited over 75,000 times; an average citation rate of 20.82 for the 21-year period.

From 2006 to 2013 Incites™ indexed a total of 1,628 publications with Landcare Research staff as lead- or coauthors. These publications have been cited over 18,800 times, 12% more than for the global ‘average’ paper.

From 2006 to 2013, Landcare Research produced 13.6% of all science journal publications from CRIs and New Zealand universities in the environment/ecology subject area. We also published 23% and 16% respectively of New Zealand’s soil science and biodiversity conservation publications. The impact of Landcare Research’s publications, measured by average citations per document, was higher than for any other CRI or New Zealand university in all three research areas.

Joint peer-reviewed publications

Web of Science data cover peer-reviewed journals and technical publications such as book chapters (we published a high number of book chapters this year). There is generally a delay in Web of Science indexing New Zealand journals but the trend to early online publication has considerably reduced the time lag. Web of Science is also indexing more New Zealand journals than previously. Publications with only Landcare Research authors are not included.

For year ending 30 June 2012 2013 2014
With other New Zealand organisations 39 (27%) 76 (39%) 86 (35%)
With overseas organisations 105 (73%) 118 (61%) 158 (65%)
Total 144 194 244

Collaboration with universities

All our larger sites are on or close to university campuses and we have a number of joint appointments with five New Zealand universities. We are strengthening our close relationship with Lincoln University as we contribute to the development of a campus plan and a collaborative research programme with the university and other partners in the Lincoln Hub. This facilitates research excellence and encourages opportunities for our staff to co-supervise postgraduate students and present invited lectures.

We have increased the number of part-time appointments (to five) of our high performing scientists in our Joint Graduate School with the University of Auckland to engage in collaborative projects and to encourage many more PhD students into our research programmes.

For year ended 30 June: 2011 2012 2013 2014
NZ university staff in our research projects 38 41 42 441
Our staff in university projects 13 13 7 92
Postgraduates being supervised by our staff 71 102 483 903
Staff paid to lecture in university courses 12 7 10 84
University positions held by staff 36 39 29 235

1 44 staff and postgrad students from 8 universities collaborating in 32 of our research projects
2 9 of our staff in 7 programmes at 5 universities
3 63 PhD and 27 MSc (does not include overseas students supervised by overseas research associates). The significant drop in 2013 was due to completion of a large number of theses
4 8 staff delivered 15 sets of paid lectures; another 20 staff provided 25 sets of guest lectures
5 18 staff hold 23 honorary positions (professorships, lectureships, fellowships) in New Zealand and overseas universities