Dr Marilyn McPherson’s (also known as Dr Brewin) role is to conduct excellent research that is relevant to the Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Research Plan and assist the Centre in the academic monitoring and evaluation of its research.
Marilyn completed her Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Geography at The University of Auckland in 1976. Following 16 years teaching at St Stephens School, Marilyn enrolled and graduated with a Master of Arts in Geography from The University of Auckland in 1992. Her thesis was entitled Toitu Te Whenua: Relationships Between Whānau and Whenua. Following the completion of her Masters degree, Marilyn continued to work in Māori education, research and health at Pūkenga, Faculty of Māori Education at UNITEC. In 2003, she consolidated these interests by completing her PhD at the Injury Prevention Research Centre, within the Department of Community Health and the Faculty of Medicine at The University of Auckland. Between 2004–11, Marilyn was Research – Programme Leader at Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga. As Programme Leader she developed the annual contestable research round for mid-career and senior researchers. More than 60 Principal Investigators and their research teams have carried out excellent research across a range of broad themes. The writing retreats, symposia, seminar series and international conferences have provided a balanced opportunity for presenting research ideas to a broad range of audiences from local to international contexts.
Marilyn’s current research interests are eclectic, exciting and engaging. Firstly, from her Masters Study she is exploring the need for aroha in research. Secondly, she is updating her PhD thesis It’s about Whakapapa to review current trends and themes in Māori injury prevention and safety. She hopes to work with other indigenous researchers to develop an indigenous model of safe communities. And thirdly, she will construct a blog to explore San Filipo Syndrome, a muccopolysaccharide disorder which killed her nine year old son, Kyle in 1985. She will explore the impact of a debilitating condition, with no cure, on whānau. She intends to write a book from the blog.