National and International Interests
The Council of the Royal Society of New Zealand invites and expresses the views of its fellows, members, and committees on scientific problems of national importance. Its sectional committees report on the state and needs of the several disciplines. Ad hoc committees have dealt with such topics as fuel and power, earthquake risk, conservation, Antarctic research, the National Research Council Bill, etc. It contributes scientific experience by nominating representatives on many national bodies, such as the Board of Trustees of the National Art Gallery and Dominion Museum, the Royal New Zealand Institute of Horticulture, Ross Dependency Research Committee, National Parks Authority, National Historic Places Trust, Medical Research Council, UNESCO Technical Subcommission for Science, and Carter Observatory Board. The Society initiates and sponsors the Triennial New Zealand Science Congress, in which 28 different scientific societies participate, and has arranged publication of their proceedings.
International functions of the Royal Society include liaison with numerous scientific academies overseas. Leading overseas scientists are elected honorary members of the Society. The Royal Society of New Zealand is the adhering body for the International Council of Scientific Unions, is itself a member of several international unions and of the Scientific Committees for Antarctic Research and for Oceanic Research, and is the New Zealand participating body in the Pacific Science Association, appointing a permanent representative to the Pacific Science Council. In 1949 the Society was responsible for organising the Seventh Pacific Science Congress, held in New Zealand, and for publishing its proceedings. Close contact is maintained with the Australian and New Zealand Association for the Advancement of Science; meetings were held in New Zealand in 1936 and 1957. New Zealand representation is arranged and, to some degree, supported at international congresses in many sciences, general assemblies of international unions, and scientific celebrations, such as the Tercentenary of the Royal Society of London, and the Bicentenary of Princeton University.
The Royal Society of New Zealand functions as nominating body for a number of international prizes, fellowships, and bursaries, and the like.
The office and library of the Society are situated in the Kirk Building, Victoria University of Wellington.
by Charles Alexander Fleming, O.B.E., B.A., D.SC., F.R.S.N.Z., Chief Paleontologist, New Zealand Geological Survey, Lower Hutt.
- Proceedings of the Royal Society of New Zealand (1961) 89 (2): 95–122 (Act and Rules), 123–134 (awards, officers, and council, past presidents, honorary members, fellows).