Recognition for three Otago academics

University of Otago academic staff members Michael Baker and Anita Gibbs yesterday received Critic and Conscience of Society Awards from the Gama Foundation.

The $50,000 awards were made at the university and this is the first time the foundation, a non-profit body which
sponsors research, has recognised two people at once with the award.

Prof Baker, a public health specialist at Otago’s Wellington campus, had made "extraordinary efforts" to keep New Zealanders informed about the Covid-19 crisis.

A lecturer and social worker, Associate Prof Gibbs had worked to raise the profile of foetal alcohol spectrum
disorder, a foundation spokesman said.

- University of Otago School of Geography head Etienne Nel has received this year’s distinguished New Zealand geographer award and medal for his contribution to geography and development.

A New Zealand Geographical Society spokesman said Prof Nel had written and edited 11 books and 130 journal articles.

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