Capacity development

Whakatipu Āheinga

Capacity development infographic

SfTI offers its 200+ researchers a unique Capacity Development programme.

About SfTI capacity development – Hei piki te āheitanga

To accelerate the evolution of our hi-tech economy, we fund our researchers to expand their human and relational skills, so that they can connect and co-innovate with industry and Māori and create new, high-value, high-impact products and services.


Our programme – Ko te kaupapa

The SfTI Capacity Development Programme offers regular workshops for SfTI researchers, and provides funding to attend external workshops, courses, conferences, showcases, secondments and mentorship programmes. Our capacity development supports activities that develop the following values.


Connecting – Whakawhanaungatanga

Our scientists train to be super connectors.

They learn how to make and maintain relationships with industry, research and Māori organisations. They find out who the key stakeholders are in the Māori and innovation ecosystems, and attend events and meetings where contacts can be developed. They construct and coordinate best teams.


Communicating – Whakawhitiwhiti kōrero

Our scientists train to be super communicators.

They learn the values and perspectives that resonate with industry, Māori, and the media. They acquire the right language, terms, and behaviour to use in different settings. They know how to promote the value of their ideas and how to tailor their communications to their audience.


Co-innovating – Auaha-ā-rōpū

Our scientists train to be active co-innovators.

They draw on creative, best-practice teams with diverse skills and perspectives. They learn how to influence, collaborate, consult, and lead. They develop high-tech innovations with the needs of customers and end-users in mind.


Commercialising – Aronga Pakihi

Our scientists train to understand the process, priorities and timelines of commercialisation.

They learn the commercial value of their innovations, and how to work with Māori and industry to advance their ideas into the commercial market place.


Contact us – Pā mai

For more information, contact Dr. Willy-John Martin, Capacity Development Advisor.


Mobile: 027 543 7790

Site: Gracefield Innovation Quarter, 69 Gracefield Road

Mail to: PO Box 31310, Lower Hutt 5040, Wellington, New Zealand


Applying for capacity development funding – Hei tukua he tono

If you’re a SfTI researcher, you can apply for funding to develop your skills in connecting, communicating, co-innovating and commercialising

Funding can cover the following costs:

  • national workshop or conference registration
  • costs for consultancies and mentorships
  • travel costs
  • accommodation costs.

If successful, you’ll be required to give us feedback on your experience.

Capacity development funding doesn’t cover training activities that can be classed as ‘business as usual’.

For example, the funding wouldn’t cover conference attendance to present scientific work, as we consider it a core research activity. However, the funding will cover conference attendance to explore new contacts and research areas (where you’re not presenting) as relational capacity development.


Forms and information – Ngā rauemi

Apply for capacity development funding (online form)

Give us your feedback (online form)

SfTI reimbursement policy (PDF 217 KB)


Suggested capacity development activities – He hononga ki ētahi akomanga papai

The following organisations provide a range of workshops, courses, conferences and training that you may want to consider as capacity development opportunities. We’ll also support other opportunities not listed here.

The University of Auckland Business School – Executive Education

Victoria University Centre for Lifelong Learning – Professional and Executive Development

Institute of Directors

Better by Design

The Icehouse

Velocity (Centre for Innovation and Entrepreneurship, University of Auckland)


Federation of Māori Authorities

Callaghan Innovation – Innovation Foundations

Science Media Centre – Media Savvy workshops



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