2009-03-12

AgResearch and Lincoln University Merger Prospect

The Chairman of AgResearch and the Chancellor of Lincoln University today announced that the Crown Research Institute and the University support, in principle, the merger of the two organisations to create a substantially enhanced Lincoln University with a specific and deep focus on land utilisation and associated environmental and social integrity throughout New Zealand.

AgResearch and Lincoln University will now embark on a combined consultative process before concluding whether to recommend to Cabinet a full merger. The proposal is to create a world-class, land-based University supporting research, education and extension that is focused on New Zealand’s vital primary industries.

“This would create an internationally outstanding entity, which would rank in the world’s top five of its type,” said Tom Lambie, Chancellor of Lincoln University.

“New Zealand needs to lift its rate of productivity growth and the obvious place to start is with the land-based industries. Through the creation of a world-class, internationally ranked, 21st century land-based University, the performance of New Zealand’s land-based industries will be enhanced substantially,” said Mr Lambie.

AgResearch Chairman Sam Robinson says when AgResearch was formed it brought together animal sciences from the Ministry of Agriculture and plant sciences from the DSIR which allowed, for the first time, the development of a coherent scientific view of how a farm operates.

“This merger will go that one vital step further and translate all that knowledge and technology that our scientists produce into coherent education and training for immediate industry benefit along the entire value chain. AgResearch has more scientists than any other government-owned research organisation in New Zealand and merging with Lincoln University will provide a more stable base for New Zealand’s most important research and development, and enhance teaching activity,” said Mr Robinson.

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