Towards a stronger Kaikōura: a community event
Kaikōura community members gathered on 10 April to hear from National Science Challenge researchers who have been working in the area since the 2016 quake.
The event, hosted by Sustainable Seas and Resilience to Nature’s Challenges, saw 7 multidisciplinary researchers speak about their work.
Dr Leigh Tait (NIWA) described the physical recovery of marine ecosystems whose habitats were altered in the quake. Dr Jo Fountain (Lincoln University), Assoc Prof Nick Lewis and Dr Dan Hikuroa (University of Auckland) discussed the recovery of Kaikōura’s tourism industry and the quake’s impact on the Māori marine economy and blue economy in the area.
After a break for refreshments and some lively conversations about the preceding talks, Ashley Rudkevitch (Lincoln University) outlined her studies on community initiatives that facilitate social recovery. This was followed by a talk from Prof David Simmons (Lincoln University) on how we can ensure our visitors are prepared for future events, and preliminary findings from Laura Tilley's (University of Canterbury) research on tsunami evacuation after the quake.
At the end of each session the floor was opened for comments and questions, resulting in interesting discussions between locals and researchers. In many cases those who attended provided valuable insight and information that will go on to inform this research in the future.
The event was widely appreciated by attendees, and demonstrated the value and importance of researchers sharing the work they are doing with the affected community and participants.
“Over the last two years, we have been talking to a lot of researchers and sharing our experiences with them. It was great to see the fruit of all that work and I look forward to working with them to help the community better prepare in the future,” said Kd Scattergood, Kaikōura District Council Emergency Management Officer.