Scientist tweets about 'inspiring' week with Richard Branson on his private island

A New Zealand scientist has spent a week with Richard Branson on his private Caribbean island playing chess, eating sushi and discussing technology and sustainability.

Auckland University nanotechnology lecturer Michelle Dickinson was one of eight people invited by the British billionaire to Necker Island to discuss science issues, with Dickinson's focus on New Zealand science.

Dickinson is well known for her social media profile called Nano Girl, and has been regularly tweeting about her experience throughout the past week.

On Friday she posted about lunch being served on a sushi boat in the pool, before tweeting a photo of a turtle photobombing one of her selfies.

She later posted a photo of her challenging Branson to a game of chess, with a stunning Caribbean view in the background.

But it was not all poolside sushi and chess for the innovative young scientist.

She spent a lot of time discussing New Zealand science with Branson and the other guests.

Her trip was believed to have been part-funded by New Zealand accounting software firm Xero.

Dickinson tweeted that without the support of the company's chief executive, Rod Drury, the trip would not have been possible.

"Because Rod Drury believed in me, I'm currently talking about New Zealand science with Richard Branson on his private island," she wrote.

On her final day on the island, Dickinson posted a picture of her hugging Branson and saying how much of an inspiration he had been.