Next Generation Influencers

This was a one-year programme to develop the capability of influential, innovative future leaders.

Paul Sutherland

What Did We Do

Next Generation Influencers was a one-year programme to develop the capability of influential, innovative future leaders.

The 15 people selected to participate in the Next Generation Influencers programme are at the forefront of fundamental shifts in attitudes and behaviours. Participants are working in fields aligned with Our Land and Water: to create resilient, diversified landscapes, to maximise global value for what we produce, and to build community capability to transition to more sustainable futures.

The 2018-2019 programme consisted of 3 workshops developed to build the skills, networks and connections of Next Generation Influencers. Participants then each developed a project to further the work of Our Land and Water and bring about understanding and change. Each Next Generation Influencer was partnered with a mentor who supports their project and helps develop their skills and networks.


Melissa Robson-Williams


Participant Spotlight

Ngi Profile Angela Clifford

Angela Clifford

Eat New Zealand | The Food Farm | Tongue in Groove Wines

Telling the story of New Zealand grains and seeds through the Eat New Zealand network for the purpose of creating shorter value chains, and therefore more sustainable land use.

Ngi Profile Rachel Cooper

Rachel Cooper

Developing a programme to encourage more young girls into science and help them to develop confidence and skills to lead. The programme is based in the outdoors and teaches the sciences in a variety of ways.

Ngi Profile Manaia Cunningham

Manaia Cunningham

Ngai Tahu strategic advisor, ECan

Developing an organic growing system for Māori potatoes at a small scale and promoting their nutrient value. Working closely with Eat New Zealand and networking with other organic growers on the east coast of the Canterbury region.

Ngi Profile Ellen Hume

Ellen Hume

Researcher, Te Pūnaha Matatini Centre of Research Excellence | University of Auckland

Taking a more integrated approach to researching complex environmental system issues to improve decision-making processes.

Ngi Profile Rebecca Hyde

Rebecca Hyde

Ravensdown | Inverloch Farm Ltd | Nuffield Scholar

Bringing Māori cultural understanding and ways of thinking into mainstream discussion with industry bodies and farmers.

Sam Lang

Sam Lang

Farmer and collaborator (self-employed) | Nuffield Scholar

Sharing stories of regenerative farm and food system innovation, and collaborating to build support networks for farmers moving towards regenerative systems.

Ngi Profile Alex Mccall

Alex McCall

Using technology to connect and engage New Zealanders in social and environmental issues.

Ngi Profile Nicola Mchaffie

Nicola McHaffie

Hawkes Bay Regional Council | Secretary, NZ Association of Resource Management

Growing my leadership style to encourage engagement and connection between my team, land owners and mana whenua.

Ngi Profile Lisa Mclaren

Lisa McLaren

PhD student, Joint Centre for Disaster Research | National convenor, Zero Carbon Act campaign

Collaborating with Our Land and Water scientists to make my PhD model relevant for the primary industry sector. My current PhD model provides a way for community resilience principles to be integrated into community/participatory science within the hazard management field.

Paul Mudge

Paul Mudge

Soil scientist, Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research

Promote and foster integrated research to concurrently address issues around soil/water quality and climate change mitigation/adaptation.

Ngi Profile Carla Muller

Carla Muller

Perrin Ag Consultants | President, New Zealand Institute of Primary Industry Management

Redefining economic indicators to capture a more holistic measure of economic value.

Ngi Profile Kolja Schaller

Kolja Schaller

Land Management Advisor, Greater Wellington Regional Council

Connecting with landowners and farmers to enable the sharing of knowledge and perspectives to build environmental, economic, cultural and social capitals.

Ngi Profile Will Tait

Will Tait-Jamieson

Senior Advisor, Ministry for Primary Industries | Trustee, Our Seas Our Future

Connecting partners in Northland for environmental and economic benefit.

In the media Mai i te ao pāpaho

Farmers Weekly, 19 September 2019
NGI participant Carla Muller was elected president of the Institute of Primary Industry Management. She’s determined to solve the disconnect between what policy and research are trying to achieve and what is happening on-farm.
Hyundai Country Calendar, 14 July 2019
NGI participant Angela Clifford tells Country Calendar how her family grows their own food, from berries to bacon, potatoes to poultry., and why she wants all New Zealanders to connect with their food and know where it comes from.
NZ Herald, 21 May 2019
NGI participant Angela Clifford is working towards a goal of New Zealand being self-sufficient in milling wheat by 2025.
NZ Herald, 10 May 2019
NGI participant Angela Clifford talks to RNZ's Country Life about her goal to make New Zealand a premium food destination. "One of our major pushes is about short-value chains, i.e. not many steps between the person who has grown or caught the food and the person who is eating the food."
NZ Geographic, Jan-Feb 2019
A profile of NGI participant Lisa McLaren and her successful Generation Zero organisation, which has resulted in the Labour government’s proposed Zero Carbon Bill.
Stuff, January 2019
Opinion piece written by NGI participant Lisa McLaren.
Idealog, December 2018
NGI participant Alex McCall’s Squawk Squad web app was recognised as 2018’s top social enterprise innovation by Idealog magazine.

Pathways to Transition Projects

Dsc9947 Enhanced Nr 1200px Credit Richie Toa Mills

Ngā Tai-o-Rongo

Revitalising ancestral knowledge systems to provide a pathway for Māori landowners to work with the environment, rather than on the environment.
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This project has produced
Information Type Icon Video Outline
Te Taiao framework in use

Lessons from Our Land and Water

The Our Land and Water National Science Challenge journey to a Tiriti-led science partnership: the lived experience and the lessons learned
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Tukituki River and Te Mata Peak. Photo: Phillip Capper via Flickr

Synthesis Scenarios for Future Land Use

Steering land use change to meet water quality targets, through the synthesis of Our Land and Water research
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Rural Professional Fund 2020 21

Rural Professionals Fund 2020–21

There were 15 successful projects in the first funding round for the Our Land and Water Rural Professionals Fund.
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Trust and Social Licence

Investigating the importance of trust and approval by the community of the primary sector’s practices, and the connection to productivity and sustainable growth in New…
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Rural Professional Fund 2021 22

Rural Professionals Fund 2021–22

There were 12 successful projects in the second funding round for the Our Land and Water Rural Professionals Fund.
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