Doctoral Research Committee

The Doctoral Research Committee will advise Academic Board on matters relating to doctoral degrees at Massey University. Its membership, terms of reference and accountability are as follows:

Terms of Reference

1.  Statement of Intent and Purpose

1.1  University Strategy

The University's teaching and learning strategy is to provide an exceptional, distinctive and high quality learning experience for all students.  Effective engagement of the University community in academic decision-making is an integral part of this strategy.

To provide effective engagement of the University's doctoral research community in academic decision-making, the role and function of the Doctoral Research Committee is to oversee the administration of the University's doctoral degrees, and to maintain and promote the integrity and quality of these degrees.

1.2  Legislative Authority

Academic Board is a Board established pursuant to Section 182(2) of the Education Act 1989.  The Academic Board may convene sub-committees to undertake specific duties on behalf of the Board.  For the avoidance of doubt, all sub-committees constituted by the Academic Board are hereby deemed to be Committees of Council appointed pursuant to Section 193 of the Education Act 1989.  All delegations by the Academic Board to its sub-committees may further delegate to staff.

1.3  Specific Delegations

Council delegates the following powers to the Doctoral Research Committee (DRC):

  1. Receive Doctoral Examination reports;
  2. Approve the award of the University Doctoral Degrees where the Committee is satisfied that the University's academic requirements and regulations have been met;
  3. Approve failed Doctoral examination results;
  4. Approve the appointment of examiners;
  5. Approve withdrawals and terminations of candidature;
  6. Approve suspensions and extensions of candidature;
  7. Approve provisional registration and confirmation of registration subject to requirements being met;
  8. Approve minor calendar changes and changes to regulations (other than regulations that require approval of CUAP) with respect to Doctoral Degrees.

 In addition, the Doctoral Research Committee will:

  • Develop proposals for changes to University Doctoral regulations, policy and procedures for doctoral programmes at Massey University including the: Doctor of Philosophy degree; Named Doctorates; Higher Degrees, and either approve such proposals (within delegation) or recommend to Academic Board and/or Council for approval as appropriate;
  • Advise the Dean of the Graduate Research School on matters relating to the maintenance of excellence in the doctoral programmes;
  • Receive reports relating to the administration of the University's doctoral programmes, including the administration, research progress, examination of candidates, and approval of examination results;
  • Provide information on doctoral programmes to staff and candidates;
  • Advise Academic Board on matters relating to doctoral programmes
  • Consider matters referred to the Committee by Academic Board and advise Academic Board accordingly.

2.  Membership

The Membership of the Committee shall be comprised as follows:

  • Chair: Dean of Graduate Research School or nominee
  • Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Research) or nominee
  • Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Academic and International) or nominee
  • Nominee from Te Mata o te Tau (Academy for Maori Research and Scholarship) for a three year term
  • One Academic staff member from each College appointed by the Pro Vice-Chancellor of that College for a three year term
  • One Academic staff member from each Campus appointed by Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Research) for a three year term
  • Three Academic staff members [with permanent status as defined in Section 171 (10) of the Act] appointed by Academic Board for a three year term, one of whom is to be a member of Academic Board
  • One member who is a fully registered full-time doctoral student, and one member who is a fully registered part-time doctoral student normally elected for a minimum period of two year term by the full-time or part-time doctoral students respectively
  • Vice-Chancellor (ex officio)
  • Up to two additional academic members may be co-opted by the Committee for maximum term of three years.

Administrative Support to be provided by a Doctoral Administrator.

Note: All members may be reappointed for more than one term. All members can be re-elected.

3.  Chair of Doctoral Research Committee

The Chair of the Doctoral Research Committee shall be the Dean of Graduate Research School or nominee.

4.  Meetings and Other Protocols

4.1  Meetings shall be held monthly from February through December in the ordinary course of events.
4.2  The Chair may convene meetings as he or she thinks necessary for the efficient performance of the Committee.
4.3  A quorum of the DRC shall comprise a minimum of seven (7) members, including the Chairperson or nominee.

5.  Reporting to Academic Board

5.1  An Annual Report will be provided to the Academic Board. This report will include a summary of all doctoral candidates who have successfully completed their degree in the preceding calendar year, candidates who failed, and other information relevant to the authority and duties of the committee.

5.2  The committee will report as required to Academic Board on matters relating to the duties outlined.


Current Doctoral Committee Members


Associate Professor Tracy Riley

Committee Secretary:

Janene de Ridder

Vice Chancellor:

Professor Jan Thomas

Representative of Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Research, Academic & Enterprise):

Associate Professor Leigh Signal

College Representatives:

Professor Kambiz Maani (CoB)
Professor Heather Galbraith (CoCA)
Professor Bernhard Breier (CoH)
(Appointment pending) (CoHSS)
(Appointment pending) (CoS)

Nominees from Campus RCEs:

(Position vacant) (Albany)
Professor Ian Fuller (Manawatu)
(Position vacant) (Wellington)

Nominees from Academic Board:

Professor Barry Borman
Professor Jenny Carryer
Professor Vicki Karaminas

Nominee from Academy for Maori Research and Scholarship

(Position vacant)

PhD Student Representative (Fulltime):

Aniek Hilkens

PhD Student Representative (Part-time):

Jo Ross

Co-Opted by DRC:


Administrative Support:

Dr Julia Rayner
Ms Janene de Ridder
Ms Bridget Campbell
Ms Alethea Baker
Ms Nicky Duffin
Ms Jenny Mark
Ms Hannah Tokona
Ms Phyllis Yang

The Doctoral Office can be contacted at

Massey Contact Centre Mon - Fri 8:30am to 5:00pm 0800 MASSEY (+64 6 350 5701) TXT 5222 Web chat Staff Alumni News Māori @ Massey