Professor Michael Walker is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Royal Institute of Navigation in London. He is best known for his research on the existence, capacities and use of the magnetic sense in navigation over long distances. Recently, he has developed research investigating the mechanisms of the lunar and tidal rhythms in marine organisms.
He also led other NPM projects, He Reo no te Whenua: The establishment of a Māori-centric conservation paradigm and Use of advanced technologies to develop culturally appropriate pest-management strategies for rural Māori communities.
Mike has worked to increase participation of Māori and Pacific Island people in all aspects of the sciences and research beginning with the Tuakana Programme in the School of Biological Sciences and through his teaching. He was a founding Joint Director of Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, New Zealand’s Māori Centre of Research Excellence, from 2002-2010. His personal research and work in Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga were profiled in Science in 2007.
He was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2009, and was awarded the Prime Minister’s Supreme Award for Sustained Tertiary Teaching Excellence in 2011.