About us

The mission of the Deep South Challenge: Changing with our Climate is to enable New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk and thrive in a changing climate.

We know that scientists, industry and communities must work together if society is to adapt to our changing climate. Climate science can be complex and challenging, and isn’t always effectively incorporated in planning and decision making. Our challenge is unique among climate research programmes in New Zealand for the way it joins together physical science, predictive climate modelling and social science. To guide planning and policy, we're bringing together new research approaches to determine the impacts of a changing climate on our climate-sensitive economic sectors, infrastructure and natural resources. 

We’re engaging closely with central and regional government, whānau, hapū and iwi, business, infrastructure and industry. We’re collaborating with decision makers to share our research about the kinds of climate change impacts we can expect in the coming decades and centuries, and to develop the kinds of tools required to help people make decisions in the face of complex changes in the future.

Through innovative community engagement and multi-disciplinary research collaborations, our five interlinked programmes connect  scientists with society.

 

Our objective

Our objective, set by Cabinet, is to understand the role of the Antarctic and Southern Ocean in determining our climate and our future environment. Building on our objective, our mission was developed to guide our vision, research priorities and activities.

 

Our mission

Our mission is to enable New Zealanders to adapt, manage risk, and thrive in a changing climate.

 

Our governance and management structure

The following schematic outlines our governance and management structure. Māori leadership and input is included at all levels.

Deep South Challenge governance schematic. Click on the image to expand it.

 

Independent Science Panel

The Independent Science Panel provides our Board with independent science advice and input into the challenge’s science strategy and priorities. The panel also helps with assessments of science quality and performance.  

Read more about the Independent Science Panel

 

Governance Board

Our independent Board was appointed by the collaborative parties of the Deep South Challenge.

Read more about the Governance Board

 

Kāhui Māori

Our Kāhui Māori provides the Governance Board and Science Leadership Team with strategic advice and input into our science strategy and priorities, and helps with the assessment of science quality, performance and responsiveness to iwi, hapū, whānau and Māori business goals.

Read more about the Deep South Challenge's Kāhui Māori

 

Science Leadership Team

The Science Leadership Team is responsible for scoping, leading and developing of the Deep South Challenge.

Read more about the Science Leadership Team 

 

Challenge Parties

The Deep South Challenge, hosted by NIWA, is a research collaboration between the following Crown Research Institutes, universities and research providers:

Latest news and updates

portrait of Adrian McDonald

"These models are good. They have real predictive power." Q&A with departing P&O lead, Adrian McDonald

Today we announce that our Processes & Observations programme lead, Adrian McDonald, is stepping down from our Science Leadership Team. We thank him for his calm and warm leadership over the last two and a half years. In this Q&A (taken from our recently published magazine Kia Urutau | Adapt), we asked Adrian about the role of climate modelling in supporting good adaptation in Aotearoa New Zealand.

double page opening spread of magazine article

The Living Net: Kai in a Changing Climate

I MEET PETER INSLEY on a low promontory that rests above the Hāparapara River. Kids have built a rickety jumping platform in the pūriri and mānuka above us, but the water below – blue and glistening – looks treacherous. It’s hard to gauge the depth or see the snags. The river has always behaved like this. It beelines out of the hills and hits this hard rock, pooling and gathering before sweeping off again towards Omaio Bay in the Eastern Bay of Plenty.

Paul Robinson on the border between the Hutt River and his Port Road property

Port Road: Climate risks at our urban edges

IT’S A CALM SUNDAY morning as I arrive at the home of Wellington property investor Paul Robinson, in the thriving beachside community of Plimmerton. Armed with muffins from the local café, I’m greeted by Paul’s friendly border collie Harry, who herds me into a stunning, carefully designed house.