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Fifth round of Unlocking Curious Minds funds 34 more projects


The fifth round of Unlocking Curious Minds has awarded just over $2 million in funding to 34 exciting projects that will begin in February 2019.

Unlocking Curious Minds is a contestable fund, which supports innovative, quality projects that aim to enhance and broaden the connection and engagement of ‘harder-to-reach’ New Zealanders, particularly young people aged 18 years and under, with science and technology.

Through the 2019 funding round, 22 local community projects and 12 regional projects will be supported.  Unlocking Curious Minds awards grants of up to $30,000 for local community projects and $150,000 for regional projects.

Some of the inspirational projects the fund is supporting next year include:

  • Understanding rusts – fungal invaders of Aotearoa, by Plant and Food Research. In this project students will learn about how scientists work with biosecurity threats in Aotearoa, comparing myrtle rust with other rust fungi, discovering fungal life cycles and concepts about research into unwanted plant diseases.

  • Possums and Pythagoras: How mathematics helps solve New Zealand’s pest mammal problem, by Landcare Research. By collecting, analysing and mapping their own GPS data during an interactive field trip, students will learn how mathematics helps us understand animal ecology resulting in effective control of pest mammals.

  • The Air Science Circus by NIWA. A touring ‘circus’ of air-themed experiments and experiences will prompt school children to create collaborative data, art, and stories which will be virtually curated and shared to support peer-to-peer learning.

  • Lake Taupō Forestry Trust Science and Technology Education Camp by Scion. A STEM Pruners School Holiday Programme for children from the Bay of Plenty-Central Plateau region forest communities. The project supports the growth, education and workforce development goals of the Māori forestry sector as well as the future success of the Central North Island forestry region.

Over 180 projects have received funding through Curious Minds since its establishment in 2013.

View the list of projects receiving funding in 2019

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