First Overseas Conference Travel Fund


Due to the continuing inability to travel as a result of Covid-19, NZMSS will not be offering the Firsts Overseas Conference Travel Fund in  2021

We hope you can understand. Please check back for updates on the 2022 travel fund.

The First Overseas Conference Travel Fund (FOCTF) was established by members of the Society to help young researchers present their work at an overseas conference.

The Society recognises that New Zealand’s geographic isolation can disadvantage emerging researchers. Outstanding research deserves to be disseminated in global venues and events, and researchers must interact with other professionals to further their knowledge and careers as marine scientists.

The FOCTF was established to achieve these goals.

Applications close 1 March and 15 August.


There are two rounds of the award in each calendar year. Applications close on 1 March and 15 August each year. The FOCTF application form in Microsoft Word format and can be typed directly into and emailed to (see below instructions).




  1. Applicants must be enrolled in a postgraduate course of study in some aspect of marine science at a New Zealand institution and greater weight will be given to students enrolled in a PhD.
  2. Applicants must be a current member of NZMSS and greater weight will be given to students who have already presented a paper or poster at an NZMSS conference.
  3. Applications will be accepted only from members proposing to present a paper or poster at their FIRST overseas conference.  However, applicants who have completed a previous degree overseas and attended a conference in that country will also be accepted.


The award will normally be made twice a year.

  1. Conference attendance must take place within 12 months of the application closing date.
  2. The award may not be made if there are no suitable applicants.
  3. The number and value of awards allocated following each of the two application deadlines will be at the discretion of the council, and dependent on available funds.
  4. Awards for conferences in the Pacific (including Australia) will not exceed NZ$1500. Awards for conferences elsewhere in the world will not exceed NZ$2000.

Please send your completed form as an email attachment to


  1. Applications will be independently reviewed by at least three referees (NZMSS Council members) not associated with any proposals.
  2. The referees will not confer until they have assessed and ranked the applications independently.

Assessment criteria:

  • Quality of the research
  • Conference relevance
  • Relevance of research to New Zealand
  • Student merit