Ngā Pī Ka Rere – Early Careers Network

The future of our science system, and our country, depends on those who come after us. That’s why BioHeritage is investing in the next generation.


Ngā Pī Ka Rere early careers network was established in 2019 to ensure our early career professionals have all the support they need to flourish in their chosen careers. The group intentionally don’t use the common term ‘early career researchers’ to recognise diverse career pathways within the science system. They want to enable those starting, or restarting, their careers to not feel restricted to traditional research pathways.

Other goals of the group include setting up a mentorship programme, building leadership capability within our ‘fledglings’, and offering financial support and networking opportunities that might not otherwise be available.

Co-leads Helen, Symon and Aisling are embracing the values of whanaungatanga, manaakitanga and whakapapa: connecting early careers, advocating for them, and recognising the interconnected and intergenerational nature of our country’s science system.

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Co-leads from left: Aisling Rayne (Cawthron Institute), Symon Palmer (Te Herenga Waka – Victoria University of Wellington) and Helen Warbuton (University of Canterbury).

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Check out our latest newsletters by clicking the links below:

October 2023

NPKR support for Crazy and Ambitious 4

July 2023

May 2023

March 2023

Get Involved

Congratulations to all Ngā Pī Ka Rere funding recipients:

NPKR Grants

Apply for funding:

We are delighted to invite applications for Ngā Pī Ka Rere financial support for early career people involved in BioHeritage. NPKR members may apply for support up to 6,000 NZD* (ex gst, if applicable).

Funding is available for application on a quarterly schedule:

Round 5: 1 Jul – 30 Sep (decision made by 30 Oct 2023)

This funding is intended to support diverse needs and aspirations. To that end, we are offering five broad categories (below). If you would like to submit an application that you think would fall outside these categories, we encourage you to still get in touch.

    1. Professional development (e.g., to participate in a workshop)
    2. 'Writing’ grant to communicate research (e.g., to finish a paper or thesis, attend wānanga or hui, or work on other science communication, including art and other creative works)
    3. Project and/or intern
    4. Conference support to present BioHeritage-related work
    5. Knowledge building (e.g., to support collaboration with other research teams or mentors


Please join us if:

  • You’re involved in a BioHeritage National Science Challenge or Ngā Rākau Taketake project; AND
  • You’re a student, or it’s been less than 10 years since you graduated.

If you'd like to find out more, please get in touch by emailing

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