Skip to content



In 2009 James Kalmakoff retired from the Department and Immunology, University of Otago after 40 years as an academic.  He had collected stories and photos of the staff with a view to writing a history of the department.  Some 10 years later he completed writing his memoir in which he attempted to capture the esprit de corps of the department.  It provides a window into the day-to-day triumphs, the social events and the academic activities that were the heart-beat of the staff of the department.  This memoir has been written as an ebook, a hard-copy print and an online web version.

Although The Inside Story is about the life and times at a particular department at a specific university, it is indicative of the cultural and systemic changes that have taken place at universities around the world.  Those market-driven ideologies have led to a top-down management structure resulting in the centralisation and commercialisation of the university ethos.

The Inside Story begins with a department founded in the patriarchal traditions of the past and tells the stories of those who had lived through these changes.