Brittnee Leysen

Research title: Pākehā Place-Names in New Zealand’s Central Otago & Clutha Districts: An anthropological-onomastic study

Research Summary

This project will investigate the naming motivations of introduced Pākehā, or European-origin, place-names in Otago region of New Zealand, and their significance as cultural artefacts. This research will aim to address which place-names in the Otago region have European origins, focusing mainly on the Scottish connections to the region, and why they were transported to New Zealand. I will briefly analyse how these place-names have affected the social identity and politics of the people in the Otago region, and how that is displayed in Otago’s namescape. Finally, this research will ask how introduced place-names in the Otago region have affected the current dual-naming structure in New Zealand.


(2019). Onomastica Uralica. ‘Introduced Pākehā place-names in New Zealand’s Otago region’. Debrecen, Debreceni Egyetem Magyar Nyelvtudomanyi Intézete.


Ross Fund | 2018-2019 | £3,000 | New Zealand research trip


  • International Congress of Onomastic Sciences Conference | August 2017 | Debrecen, Hungary
  • Glasgow University College of Arts Conference | May 2018 | Glasgow, Scotland