The University of Canterbury is conducting a follow-up study to the UC QuakeBox project. Back in 2012, UC QuakeBox gave members of the public the opportunity to share their stories of the Canterbury earthquakes in a mobile recording studio fashioned out of a shipping container. The UC QuakeBox was stationed at various locations throughout Ōtautahi Christchurch, with 723 stories in total recorded over the course of eight months. These stories were then transcribed and used for linguistic research at the New Zealand Institute of Language, Brain and Behaviour (NZILBB). Many of these recordings were also added to the UC QuakeStudies digital repository and made publicly available through the CEISMIC Canterbury Earthquake Digital Archive.

The UC QuakeBox sitting outside Westfield Riccarton. Photo: Waynne Williams Port Hills Productions CC-BY-NC-ND 3.0

UC QuakeBox: Take 2 seeks to revisit these stories and the people who shared them. We invite UC QuakeBox contributors to retell their stories seven years on, including their thoughts and reflections on the earthquake recovery process in Canterbury. We will re-record stories from the original contributors in a recording studio at the University of Canterbury. These recordings will then form the basis of a study that looks at people’s experiences of the Canterbury earthquakes over time and the impacts of the disaster on health and social wellbeing.

If you are one of the more than 700 individuals that shared an earthquake story back in 2012, we would love to hear from you. Email the team at or call 03 369 3370.