NZPI Conference 2019 Wrap-Up

Thanks to the organisers of the NZPI conference in Napier last week!

I had an incredible field trip out to Cape Kidnappers to see the predator proof fence protecting this special area. At the Ocean Beach sanctuary we got to pat a tuatara who was a lovely shade of green!

I also enjoyed a great night out at the social function at the Napier Prison. While the history is a little dark, the facility has now been turned into an attraction worthy of a visit. We did an escape room challenge and our guide was absolutely brilliant at sharing the history of the site with us.

At the conference itself, it was great to hear so much korero about people and human emotions. I heard words like kindness, aroha, caring and curiosity in many presentations. As we worry about what the future holds with robots, machine learning and AI; it is great to know that we are focusing on what makes us human.

Others have already commented on this, but it was great to see te reo and tikanga alive at the conference. I also had some special moments of manaakitanga extended to me by the conference team, which was really appreciated.

I enjoyed Tahu Kukutai‘s analysis of the demographic trends shaping our future NZ, and her message that we do have diverging communities arising and we need to be able to plan for these. One fact I found interesting was that most of the country’s population will be in only 16 of the local authority areas. I enjoyed Sue Minter‘s presentations (at EP and the main plenary) for showing the human aspect of climate change effects, and in using video to such good effect during her presentation. Bringing people’s stories direct to us is such a compelling way to educate.

Well done to all the presenters and to the organising staff and local branch volunteers for making it such a great conference!

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