Foundation Professor of Pacific Studies appointed to AUT University

16 Oct, 2009
Professor Peggy Fairbairn-Dunlop joins AUT University in October
Professor Peggy Fairbairn-Dunlop joins AUT University in October

Professor Peggy Fairbairn-Dunlop has been appointed as the Foundation Professor of Pacific Studies at AUT University and takes up her role at the end of October.

As Professor of Pacific Studies, the former Director of Va’aomanu Pasifika will continue to develop her research looking into the influence of societal changes on Pacific families and communities as well as fostering and facilitating Pacific research and scholarship at AUT University.

Professor Ian Shirley, Pro Vice Chancellor Research at AUT, says Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop’s appointment is an extremely significant initiative by the University.

“Not only does Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop hold the chiefly title of Tagaloatele but she has also built an outstanding reputation as a researcher and a scholar.”

“There is little doubt that Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop is one of the Pacific’s leading researchers.”

Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop has had a distinguished career as a Pacific scholar working with all the small nation states of Oceania as well as the Pacific Regional Office of UNESCO, the Asia-Pacific Forum, the United Nations Development Programme, the World Bank, NZAID and the South Pacific Commission.

Last year Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop’s contributions to research and training in the area of Pacific development issues over the past 30 years were recognised with an Insignia of an Officer of the NZ Order of Merit.

Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop has worked with AUT in the past through the Pacific Islands Family Study in the Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences and through the Building Research Capability in the Social Sciences (BRCSS) Pacific Research Network, welcoming the Bibliographic Index of Pacific Theses which the Office of Pasifika Advancement produced earlier this year.

She was the inaugural director of Va’aomanu Pasifika, the Pacific Studies unit at Victoria University.

Professor Fairbairn-Dunlop has written a wide range of reports and publications including Tamatai Samoa: Their Stories, Samoan Women: Widening Choices and Making Our Place: Growing Up PI in New Zealand.

A formal welcome will be held at the Conference Centre – WA220 at AUT University’s City Campus on October 30 from 10am to 1pm.

AUT staff who would like to attend should RSVP to Kate Scott, OPA at or Robin Hannah, IPP at by 26th October 2009.

This event is being hosted jointly by the Institute of Public Policy and the Office of Pasifika Advancement.