Abstract Submission


The New Zealand Coastal Society (NZCS) invites you to attend the NZCS Annual Conference being held in Invercargill from 12-15 November 2019. Through presentations and field trips, we plan to take full advantage of the coastal highlights, local culture and of course the hospitality, to make the conference both a learning opportunity and a memorable event.

This year’s conference theme is:

Life on the Edge - Mataora kei runga i te Tapātai

The NZCS 2019 Conference explores the theme of living on the edge of the great Southern Ocean and the challenges and diversity that this creates. From the striking fiords representing the raised sides of Te Waka o Aoraki in Fiordland, to the pounding surf coast of Te Waewae Bay where Takitimu’s voyage came to an end; life clings on, however precariously, adapting and thriving. This diversity and tenacity resonate throughout the coastline with a sense of adventure and kaitiakitanga/guardianship in those who reside here. The concept of life on the edge ties past, present and future as we reflect on the roots that have held us strong, but also look to the future and how we must adapt to ensure survival in the coastal environment.

We are looking for a diverse group of presentations and posters that delve into issues related to our changing coasts and the understanding of the important relationships between the land and the sea - how what we do on land influences our coastal and marine environment.

The conference themes listed below encourage cross-disciplinary contributions from the broad range of practitioners and community members interested in New Zealand’s coastal environment.

The conference will feature oral presentations as well as a vibrant poster session. We encourage you to think of how your proposed conference contribution can fit within one of these themes. We would also like to actively encourage submissions related to Mātauranga Maori and traditional aspects of coastal land use and resource management.

More information regarding the conference, schedule, travel, field trips and sponsorships will be added in due course to this webpage.

We hope to see you in Invercargill!


2019 NZCS Conference Presentation and Poster Themes:

1.   Coastal Science

This theme examines the state and evolution of scientific knowledge of the New Zealand coast. Presentations are sought that provide overviews of different aspects of coastal science and research in New Zealand, that explore gaps in our knowledge, and that support the management and planning of coastal resource use. Possible topics could include oceanographic processes, coastal geomorphology and morphodynamics, estuarine processes, coastal ecology, and marine geology and resources.

2.   Coastal Hazards

This theme focuses on the management of, and adaptation to, coastal hazards and the underpinning science, planning and engineering. Coastal storms, erosion, flooding, tsunami and sea level rise as well as man-made hazards (e.g. oil spills) are among the possible subtopics considered for this theme. Other possible areas of interest include coastal monitoring and hazard research techniques.

3.   Sea Level Rise, Climate Change and Resilience

The shorelines are constantly changing - what can we learn from past experience? What about the future and the looming spectre of climate change and associated sea level rise? This issue is of great concern and importance to coastal communities. The conference welcomes contributions discussing current efforts aimed at addressing and adapting to changes that may be brought on as a result of the changing climate.

4.   Coastal Engineering

This theme is focused on evolving trends in coastal engineering and the challenges that are being faced in on-going pressures between “living with the coast” and “defending the coast”. Some of the topics that could be covered in this theme include: new innovations and techniques for managing the coast, engineering challenges in the coastal zone and design studies or case histories of engineering works.

5.   Coastal Planning and Integrated Management

The use of natural resources combined with other land and marine use pressures can interfere with the carrying capacity of coastal zone ecological and social systems. This theme explores subjects such as the competition for coastal space, integrated coastal zone management, shoreline management, sustainability, and stakeholder engagement. What are the scientific, engineering and planning inputs that we need to help shape decisions for coastal uses? 

6.   Coastal Communities, Cultures and Livelihoods

Many New Zealand communities rely on the coast for their economic, social, cultural, and spiritual wellbeing. Tangata whenua are the kaitiaki of the coast, so the abundance and quality of wāhi tapu, wāhi taonga, and mahinga kai directly affects the welfare of iwi, hapū, and whānau. This stream examines the opportunities and threats faced by all communities living, expressing their culture, and making a livelihood on the coast, and how they respond to these challenges in a constantly changing environment.


In addition to the principal themes and subthemes, the conference organisers welcome submissions dealing with any aspect of coastal science and / or coastal studies.

To submit an abstract first download the Abstract Submission Form Template, fill it out and email it to nzcsconference@gmail.com.