Where Do We Come From
A two-year study, called “The longest journey — from Africa to Aotearoa”, could provide a snapshot of the lineage of all human history, according to biological anthropologist Lisa Matisoo-Smith, who is leading the research which aims to map New Zealand’s genetic heritage for the first time. Starting next year, the survey will collect DNA from about 1000 New Zealanders in Wellington, Auckland, Hamilton, Christchurch and Dunedin. “For example, we will be able to see if the genetic history of the population of Dunedin, with its strong Scottish heritage, is significantly different from that of Auckland or Wellington,” Professor Matisoo-Smith said. The survey will trace migration histories by analysing variations in genetic markers. She hoped the survey would engage the public for a “very interesting picture of the social history of a multicultural New Zealand”.