Professor Gary Wilson


Early on in his academic career, Professor Gary Wilson developed an international reputation for his research. He held a Fulbright award whilst at Victoria University, followed by the Admiral Byrd Fellowship at The Ohio State University. He was also a New Zealand Foundation for Research Fellow, before taking up a lectureship at the University of Oxford.

Gary is Chair of the multi-national ANDRILL (Antarctic Drilling) project, which has been five years in the planning, raising $40 million to cover the required science and logistics efforts. The project involves over 100 scientists from four countries and Gary’s ability to build and maintain successful teams to achieve common goals has been an important element.

He has also developed skills in outdoor leadership in order to lead seven expeditions to Antarctica. He is an educator and has contributed to the wider understanding of science through public lectures and radio and television appearances, and is a continuous promoter of the importance of science to underpin global environmental stewardship at government level. Above all, in developing multinational ventures in science, Gary has demonstrated leadership as an international negotiator.

He currently supervises ten graduate students, involving them in his expeditions to Antarctica, to South America or on international research ships and has received a graduate supervisor award from the Otago University Students Association. He has also recently being appointed Research Dean for the Division of Sciences at the University of Otago.

In 2012, Gary was appointed as the Director of the newly formed New Zealand Antarctic Research Institute.