Successful Heart Health Forum for our Early Career Researchers

The fourth Heart Health Emerging Researchers Forum 2023 was held on 11-12 October 2023 in Ōtepoti|Dunedin at Puketeraki Marae and Otago Museum. The one and a half day hui was attended by 47 emerging researchers from a broad range of heart health disciplines from around Aotearoa. Co-funded by Pūtahi Manawa and the Heart Foundation, the Forum was co-led by a diverse team of Heart Foundation Fellows and Pūtahi Manawa emerging researchers.

Claire Concannon from RNZ talks about science communication

The theme for 2023 was Manaakitanga: Respect, Kindness and Support, which built on the 2022 theme of Whakawhanaungatanga: Connections and Connectedness. The programme was designed to encourage interaction between participants and included structured and unstructured networking activities (including a half-day visit to Puketeraki Marae - a highlight of the Forum), workshops, presentations and expert panel discussions. Prior to attending, attendees participated in a series of workshops run by Takiwai Russell-Camp (Kāi Tahu, University of Otago) to learn about the pōwhiri process and develop a mihimihi, which they delivered on the Marae. 

The feedback from attendees was overwhelmingly positive with 100% of survey respondents saying that their desired outcomes were met. The attendees appreciated the unique structure of the day which embedded manaakitanga throughout and provided a safe, fun and friendly environment that facilitated building new relationships. Attendees felt they gained insight into Māori and Pacific perspectives, which will help them undertake more impactful heart health research. 
“It was such a meaningful learning experience both academic and cultural. The preparation that was provided before the visit to the marae was also really helpful in demystifying the pōwhiri process for a lot of attendees.”

Workshop on the Tapasa Pacific values framework run by Dagmar Dyck - artist, educator and programme leader of Tui Tuia Learning Circle

“It was great there was more time outside of structured talks to network and discuss amongst ourselves, and meet new people. I immediately used some of the new information I'd got from informal discussions on Outreach the following days.”

“These are the sorts of sessions that are the most helpful at conferences that I wish we got more of… All of the speakers/facilitators did an amazing job.”
Planning is already underway for the 2024 Forum, which will be held alongside the CSANZ New Zealand Annual Scientific Meeting 2024 in Ōtautahi | Christchurch in mid-June. If you’re interested in participating keep an eye out for our announcements later on this year. If you would like to join the organising committee contact us via

Presentation by Pūtahi Manawa Co-Director Māori, Dr Karen Brewer