The Pure Advantage group may only be a couple of months old, but it’s added another prominent New Zealander to its ranks, this time by way of 2011’s New Zealander of the Year, scientist and businessman Sir Paul Callaghan.
Callaghan, a world-leading scientist on the field of nanotechnology and magnetic resonance, joins the Pure Advantage ranks as a Trustee and according to group chairman Rob Morrison, the real advantage is in Callaghan’s deep understanding of the opportunities New Zealand has to create a green economy as a path to greater prosperity.
“We’re certain that his understanding of the key issues facing New Zealand will further add to the research outcomes and arguments for the opportunities available to secure our future wealth by embracing the green economy,“ said Morrison.
Callaghan alluded to some of the key issues faced by New Zealand at a StrategyNZ presentation this year when he said “we choose to be poor” due to limited investment in high-value industries.
“We are the second-hardest working country in the OECD but we are the lowest in terms of productivity, we are poor because we choose to be poor – we choose to work in low wage activities,” he said. “We need to create an economy where we are exporting knowledge, if we as a nation continue to think we can make a living by exploiting our resources, we are in serious trouble.”
Indeed, Callaghan is a big advocate for reversing the 'brain drain' and believes it is critical we create a diverse economy whereby Kiwis want to stay to build their careers and raise their families, preserving our environment and enhancing our culture at the same time.
“We must fundamentally understand the importance of environment, good transport, good education and a good health system, the mission statement for us has got to be ‘a country where talent wants to live’ and that is about looking after our pristine environment as much as anything. "
And if we want to help build the green economy, he said, science and technology entrepreneurship needs to be encouraged.
Callaghan now joins the following Pure Advantage Trustee’s:
- Sir George Fistonich
- Rob Fyfe
- Chris Liddell
- Philip Mills
- Jeremy Moon
- Lloyd Morrison
- Rob Morrison
- Geoff Ross
- Justine Smyth
- Sir Stephen Tindall
- Joan Withers