Otago University Conference

1 to 3 December 2019 

Encounters and Exchanges: Exploring the history of science, technology, medicine, and mātauranga (indigenous knowledge).


This conference will be part of a sequence of national events in New Zealand titled Tuia – Encounters 250 Commemoration. These mark the 250th anniversary of James Cook’s first Pacific voyage and the first onshore meetings between Europeans and the indigenous people of New Zealand, the Māori.

The conference is especially interested in analysing the implications for the global history of science, technology, medicine, and indigenous knowledge.

The two major themes central to the Tuia – Encounters 250 Commemoration, ‘dual heritage-shared future’ and the importance of voyaging, pose a range of questions about knowledge, how it is generated, how it is communicated and translated, and how it is entangled with power.

The emphasis on the important role of voyaging is consistent with a recent emphasis in the academic field of the history of science on ‘knowledge in transit’ or how science, technology, and indigenous knowledge – involving people, instruments, tools, communications, values, and epistemology – travel from one region to another and are transformed, reworked or contested.

To find out more about the conference, go to the conference website: otago.ac.nz/encounters-exchanges


Sunday 1 December, 6:30-9:30pm register here


Screening of Tupaia Film and Panel discussion with filmmaker and actors: Lala Rolls, Michael Tuffery and Kirk Torrance – Chaired by Radio New Zealand’s Kim Hill


Monday 2 December, 12:30-1:30pm register here


Guest speaker: Peter Moore, “Melodious Wild Musick: Endeavour and Aotearoa”


Monday 2 December, 7:15-8:30pm register here


Panel Discussion: “1769 – Meaning & Consequences”. Damon Salesa, Matariki Williams and Waihaere Mason


Tuesday 3 December, 12:30pm-1:30pm register here


Guest speaker: Ian Wedde “The Thing We Hold Up Between Us”…acknowledging the relationships between fiction, family storytelling, and what tends to get immunised as the ‘historical record’


  • All events are being held at the ASB main auditorium


In 2019, New Zealand will mark 250 years since the first meetings between Māori and Pākehā during James Cook and the Endeavour’s 1769 voyage to Aotearoa New Zealand. Tuia – Encounters 250 will acknowledge this pivotal moment in our nation’s history as well as the extraordinary feats of Pacific voyagers who reached and settled in Aotearoa many years earlier.

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