Free public lecture series

Tauhere | UC Connect - free thinking

Sharing knowledge and spreading ideas – Tauhere | UC Connect is here to grow your mind.

The University of Canterbury has been connecting local people with global thinking and expanding minds since 1873. We believe in the value of ideas that make a difference.

UC’s popular free public lecture series, Tauhere | UC Connect offers topical, educational public lectures by experts in their fields and leading thinkers from Christchurch, Canterbury and beyond. Offered both online and in person throughout the year, we’ve got a free talk for you – ranging from arts, politics and culture to science, business and law.

  • For early alerts and updates on upcoming UC Connect | Tauhere talks and speakers, join our mailing list.

Upcoming UC Connect | Tauhere lectures

We bring a fresh series of free Tauhere | UC Connect public lectures each year. 

Tauhere UC Connect public lecture series for 2022 have concluded and will return in March 2023

Watch earlier UC public lectures

We aim to make all UC public lectures available online subject to permission from the speaker/s and other considerations. Videos of UC Connect talks are usually available about a week after the live event.

To watch more than 150 UC public talks from the last decade, visit our YouTube channel or click below to watch one of our recent talks:

UC Connect: Joyful nature: the ethics of animal emotions

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, Animal Behaviour expert Professor Ximena Nelson, from the School of Biological Sciences, will explore the topic based on her research.

UC Connect: Reframing History in Aotearoa & Polynesia

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, Dr Madi Williams (Ngāti Kuia, Ngāti Kōata), explores notions of identity and connection in Aotearoa history. In Reframing History in Aotearoa & Polynesia, Dr Williams will take a longer view of the history of these islands and place them in their Pacific, Polynesian context.

UC Connect: Spying seals from space – citizen science in Antarctica

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture,Associate Professor Michelle LaRue of Gateway Antarctica, University of Canterbury, will explain the impact of the research and how more than 330,000 people around the world helped scientific researchers better understand one of the most remote and inaccessible animal species in the world.

UC Connect: What’s your poison: How do we resist antibiotic resistance?

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, Professor Heinemann will explain how we created antibiotic-resistant bacteria and how we can help stop them.

“The rise of antibiotic resistance is a story of many paths, like he awa whiria (a braided river),” Professor Heinemann says.


UC Connect: Hard to swallow - retraining the brain

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, Distinguished Professor Huckabee will take you on the remarkable journey of this seemingly simple task, from infant swallowing to adult; and then from impairment to recovery.

She will explore the remarkable capacity of the brain to modify this most complex of motor behaviours and will explore new UC-developed rehabilitation approaches, retraining the brain in how to swallow. 

UC Connect: Whakamanahia ngā tamariki: Empowering our children through language, culture and identity

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, University of Canterbury Senior Lecturer Kay-Lee Jones (Te Aitanga a Māhaki, Ngāti Porou, Te Whānau a Kai) will lead a kōrero on the importance of empowering cultural identity/identities and ancestral language/s of our tamariki/mokopuna in our Aotearoa teaching and learning settings.

UC Connect: Airborne microplastics and climate change

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, Associate Professor Revell discusses “what we know so far about the role of airborne microplastics in a changing climate, along with what is not yet known”.

UC Connect: The Adulterer's Guide: Aotearoa's Wicked Bible

This free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture tells the story of a unique artefact, how it came to light, and its conservation in Aotearoa. University of Canterbury medieval historian Dr Chris Jones will place the volume in its historical context and chart its remarkable survival. Sarah Askey, who carried out the painstaking work to preserve the book for future generations, will discuss the stabilisation and conservation process

UC Connect: Who should be caring for our Tamariki?

In this free Tauhere UC Connect public lecture, University of Canterbury academic Māori health researcher Dr Annabel Ahuriri-Driscoll will focus on the closed adoption of Māori children, highlighting the thinking that led to the Adoption Act 1955 and its amendments, as well as the outcomes for adoptees and their whānau.

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