Roddy Henderson

From NIWA, representing the Science Cluster.

I joined the Christchurch Science Centre of the Water and Soil Division of the Ministry of Works and Development in February 1979, and became a PSA member at the same time.

After a brief stint at the Aokautere Science Centre near Palmerston North I came back to Christchurch in 1983 and have worked here ever since, through organisational upheaval and changing science priorities and management styles.

In 1986 Roger Douglas’ state sector reforms led to the beginning of consulting work. In 1988 we were moved to the DSIR when the MWD more-or-less self-destructed. In 1992 Simon Upton’s science reforms led to the creation of CRIs and we moved into NIWA. In 2010 the CRI Task Force reiterated the basic notion that CRIs should perform their science and other activities for the benefit of NZ.

Nearly 24 years since the inception of CRIs, after several changes of CEO, and many changes in the NIWA Board and the shareholding ministers, and with personal experience of four collective contract negotiations, the union remains a vital part of my working life and that of many of my co-workers.

I have been a delegate for more than ten years, and a member of the National Science Committee for nearly eight years. I will do my best to contribute to the State Sector Committee so it can be an effective voice to represent members’ concerns, channelling views from members through site delegates and sector committees to the PSA Board.