AUT awards top accolade to global sports performance expert

02 Nov, 2016
Professor Patria Hume was announced as this year’s recipient of AUT’s University Medal, for her outstanding contribution to research.

One of the world’s leading sports performance experts, Professor Patria Hume, was last night announced as this year’s recipient of AUT’s University Medal, for her outstanding contribution to research.

Part of the annual AUT Excellence Awards, which recognises and celebrates excellence in the University’s community, the medal is awarded for sustained and exceptional academic achievement.

Professor Hume, who joined AUT in 2000, has an international reputation in the field of sports biomechanics. One of only 14 certified criterion anthropometrists in the world, Professor Hume was a lead researcher for the Sydney 2000 Olympics anthropometry project and received an International Olympic Committee diploma for her contribution to Olympic sport in 2001.

Professor Hume says she is honoured to receive the University Medal.

“It has been a privilege to work at AUT and to have had the opportunity to lead the development of SPRINZ. The vision shared with Dr Henry Duncan, Gaye Bryham and Professor John Cronin for a University of Sport, a concept that lead to the AUT Millennium precinct, where SPRINZ is based, couldn’t have happened without support from across the University. Everything we do is focussed on making a positive contribution to people’s lives. We provide community integrated research to improve the quality of human performance, and quality education for our students.

I would like to thank my family, friends, colleagues, mentors, students, coaches and athletes for their immense support over the course of my academic career. Together we have shown that research can help make a difference.”

She is the lead researcher for the International Rugby Board long term player health outcomes study, and lead researcher of a number of ACC projects focused on sports injury prevention.

Vice-Chancellor Derek McCormack says the University Medal is fitting recognition of Professor Hume’s contributions to sports biomechanics research and to AUT.

“Professor Hume is an internationally-respected scholar in her field, who has made an outstanding contribution to the university as a researcher, academic colleague, and a teacher and mentor for her students.

The University Medal recognises her dedication to, and sustained record in, producing high impact research, and her commitment to developing the next generation of sports biomechanics researchers.”

Based at the Sport Performance Research Institute New Zealand (SPRINZ) at AUT Millennium, Professor Hume’s research focuses on ways to improve sport performance using sports biomechanics and sports anthropometry. She aims to help reduce sporting injuries by investigating injury mechanisms and injury prevention methods and using sports epidemiology analyses.

A key member of the development team for AUT Millennium, where SPRINZ is based, Professor Hume was director of SPRINZ from its inception in 2000 until 2009. From 2013 to 2015 she was the Associate Dean Research in AUT’s Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences.

Her applied service work and research advice has been provided to a variety of sports organisations, including the New Zealand national bodies for rowing, rugby, gymnastics, netball, badminton, hockey, soccer, basketball, tennis and athletics.

Vice-Chancellor's Awards for Teaching Excellence

  • Irshad Ali
  • Dr Denise Atkins
  • Patsi Davies
  • Doctor of Health Science Teaching Team (led by Professor Liz Smythe; Associate Professor Peter Larmer, Associate Professor Deb Payne, Associate Professor Duncan Reid, Dr Deb Spence, Associate Professor Val Wright St Clair)
  • Dr Jane Verbitsky

Special recognition

  • Centre for Refugee Education Teaching Team (led by Maria Hayward; Eddie Brafield, Marilyn Carroll, Meriel Cavanagh, Jeremy Cooper, Pip Dodd, Lisa Girvan, Minoo Gorgani, Ruth Ham, Penny Hickey, Man Hau Liev, Catherine McKinlay, Tony Masterton, Pip Senior, Marianna van den Bergh)

Vice-Chancellor's Awards for Professional Excellence


  • Deborah Blake
  • Lynne Flynn
  • Marybeth Takeda


  • NZAID Scholarships Team (led by Sacha Pointon; Ruth O’Sullivan)
  • Space Planning and Timetabling Team (led by Corrie Cook; Wayne Brown, Chris Cho, Blair Daly, Steven Foot)

Vice-Chancellor's Awards for Research Excellence

Research Team

  • Ergonomics and Human Factors Group (led by Associate Professor Mark Boocock; Liz Ashby, Dr Grant Mawston, Dr Fiona Trevelyan)

Emerging Researcher

  • Dr David Rice

Postgraduate Research Supervision

  • Associate Professor Candice Harris

Individual Research Excellence

  • Associate Professor Gail Pacheco

Special Commendation for Excellence

For exceptional contributions to the university's student relations

  • John Carlson

University Medal

  • Professor Patria Hume

Professor Patria Hume

Patria Hume is a Professor of Human Performance at the Auckland University of Technology (AUT) Sport Performance Research Institute New Zealand (SPRINZ) based at AUT Millennium.

During her time as a researcher she has generated more than $4.4 million in research grants.

Since joining AUT in 2000 she has supervised 22 PhD students and 11 masters students to completion, with a further five currently enrolled.

With more than 570 scholarly publications, that include 15 book chapters, 14 edited books, 177 journal articles, 59 magazine articles, 161 technical reports, 148 conference papers and a television series, her work has been cited 5000 times.

Professor Hume has been an editorial board member for three international journals and held a number of directorships on national and international bodies.

She is a fellow of the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports, and has been a director of Sports Medicine New Zealand, Sport Science New Zealand and the International Society for the Advancement of Kinanthropometry.

Her work has been recognised with national and international awards, including the most prestigious award in her field – the International Society of Biomechanics in Sports Geoffrey Dyson Award, which she received in Japan earlier this year.

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