The way we live and develop our social mores and communities in this country is a tribute to the economy we have created. New Zealand, if we followed the pattern of most of the rest of the single or limited crop agricultural economies of the world, ought to be a subsistence third world country. In fact we are a member of the OECD, which is a remarkable accomplishment and enables us to live up to our social ambitions. This is largely a tribute to generations of scientists and technicians who have created the added value in a myriad of ways which lies at the very core of how we earn our living as international traders. It would be incomplete to prepare a list of social entrepreneurs without paying tribute to them … they have played a very large role in making us who and what we are.
An example is found in the engineer and inventor Henry Shacklock, who designed what became our archetypal kitchen appliance. His cheap and easily installed coal range created to consume our abundant lignite coal cleanly and efficiently, created the traditional New Zealand domestic economy and the cuisine which went with it. The pavlova owes its very existence to Henry Shacklock.