18 June 2021

Ann Brower is an Associate Professor at the University of Canterbury’s School of Earth and Environment.

​Where I’m from: Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA. When I was born my family lived at 721 Shady Lawn Rd. When I was 2 we moved to 612 Shady Lawn Rd. And that was it – my parents never moved again.

Research subject: How to change the world in 15 minutes or less, and environmental policy.

What I like most about my research is: My students, especially undergraduates, are a constant source of inspiration. They have so much passion, drive, and poise​.

My biggest work achievement is: the Brower Amendment to the New Zealand Building Act (2016), which will make New Zealand a safer place to be. In what is probably the only time the New Zealand Herald has ever re-printed a journal article verbatim, here is an Earthquake Spectra article about it.

The funniest thing that’s happened to me during work is: Probably when Federated Farmers put out a national press release calling me a socialist infection, that I’d infected New Zealand with the socialist politics of the US of A. Or perhaps when North & South magazine published a cover story about my research, and called me the “chirpy anti-Christ”.

Outside of work I like to: walk, cycle, tramp, swim, or do anything outdoors.

Something my colleagues don’t know about me (yet) is: I have a barely grown kitten named Ashley Bloomfield Too (AKA Ashley Boo, see picture). She likes to come for walks too. Ashley Boo is also a frequent commentator on RNZ. Mary Wilson has often read text messages sent by Ashley Boo. Her latest contribution was in response to Mary Wilson’s request for comments about the Canterbury floods: “In rain-soaked Lyttelton, Ashley Bloomfield Too the cat, has used the opportunity of three days of rain to devote her life to becoming a lap cat, after spending the first year of her life snubbing all attempts to get her to snuggle into any laps on offer.”