Amplify our Innovation: Consider Nominating a Paper for the Ronald Hicks Memorial Award

Mark Milke, Chair of the Ronald Hicks Memorial Trust

Water New Zealand members are encouraged to consider nominations for the Ronald Hicks Memorial Award. The award has been awarded since 1985 for some of the most significant innovative work on water pollution and sewage treatment in New Zealand, and awarded to many of the creative leaders of our association. Table 1 lists the previous Hicks Award winners.

The Ronald Hicks Memorial Trust Fund was established in 1984 to recognise and commemorate the contribution that Ron Hicks made to water and wastewater management in New Zealand from the mid-1950s until his death in 1983. Ron joined the Auckland Metropolitan Drainage Board from the UK as Chief Chemist at the time when the Manukau Sewerage Purification Works was under development.

He became widely respected as an international authority on domestic and industrial wastewater treatment practices, and it was through his efforts from 1957 to 1959 that the NZ Sewage and Industrial Wastes Association, the forerunner of Water New Zealand, was formed.

Ron Hicks’ legacy is remembered through the Ronald Hicks Memorial Award made to the author(s) of an article or paper considered significant in solving or clarifying sewage treatment or water pollution problems in New Zealand.

Nominations come from Water New Zealand members, but non-members are also eligible for the award. Nominated papers and articles do not need to be published by Water New Zealand, and in today’s increasingly international and electronic world, the trustees would expect nominations for papers published in international research journals or conference proceedings, and websites both in New Zealand and overseas.

The Trust Fund is administered by three trustees who together comprise the judging panel for the award. The current trustees are:

  • Mark Milke, Christchurch (Chairman)
  • Nick Dempsey, Auckland
  • Paul Barter, Nelson

Today’s society continues to be challenged to solve or better understand its water pollution and sewage treatment problems. We do not have all the answers, but we do have many people contributing to important innovations. To help us communicate new knowledge via the award, the Trustees need the support of Water NZ members. Consider helping your association by making submissions for the Ronald Hicks Memorial Award.

Any queries regarding this Award should be made to the Chairman. Nominations can be sent via email or post to Mark Milke (; Dept. Civil Eng., Univ. Canterbury, Private Bag 4800, Christchurch 8140), or to Water New Zealand ( Nominations this year will close Friday, 11 August 2017, and any award will be made at this year’s Annual Conference in Hamilton.