About our research

Merino ram judging at the Canterbury Show.

Kia ora. Welcome.

Counting Sheep: NZ Merino in an Internet of Things is a three-year research project (2011-2014) based in the School of Design, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. Led by Dr Anne Galloway, our work explores the role that cultural studies and design research can play in supporting public engagement with the development and use of science and technology.

The Internet of Things is a vision for computing that uses a variety of wireless identification, location, and sensor technologies to collect information about people, places and things - and make it available via the internet.

Today's farms generate and collect large amounts of data, and we're interested in what people can do with this information - as well as what we might do with related science and technology in the future.

Over the past two years we've travelled around the country, visiting merino stations, going to A&P; shows and shearing competitions, and spending time in offices and labs, talking with breeders, growers, shearers, wool handlers, scientists, industry representatives, government policy makers and others - all so that we could learn about how NZ merino is grown and used.

Then we took what we learned about people's hopes and concerns, and we started to imagine possible scenarios for the future production and consumption of merino sheep and products...


Please take a look around, and we hope you'll share our work with your friends and family.

We also invite you to take part in a 10-15 min. anonymous online survey to help us better understand what kinds of science and technology people want - and don't want - in the future.

There's no limit to how many surveys you can submit, but please complete a separate survey for each scenario. We started with three projects - but we keep adding more, and hope you'll come back again soon.

Thanks for visiting and sharing your thoughts with us!

- Anne, Dani, Hamish, Lauren, Mata and Peggy

PS. If you have any questions about our research, please just email us.