Tāhuhu Matatau Te Ao Tangaroa: Empowering the kaitiaki of Ngā Whare Tokotoru ki Katikati with mātauranga from Aotearoa and beyond

The Māori research team is working collaboratively with local kaitiaki and participating hapū to: (i) review Western science literature in domains relating to marine ecology, spatial planning, real-time monitoring and aquaculture to (ii) identify, prioritise and validate areas of relevance and possible data/knowledge gaps while (iii) mediating the transfer of approaches, frameworks and tools to frontline kaitiaki via the development of an online training programme and resource centre.

Project leader: Caine Taiapa, Manaaki Te Awanui

Using science to support kaitiaki

This project is led by Manaaki Te Awanui in collaboration with iPansophy Ltd, Waikato University and Epiphron Ltd. The research team is working collaboratively with local kaitiaki/guardians and participating hapū to review scientific information, to inform kaitiaki activities and decision-making. The team is identifying gaps in data and knowledge as well as assessing what information is most important, relevant and useful to enhance the role of kaitiaki.

Importantly, the project will use the research team’s unique and newly-developed model of hapū engagement to tailor and develop the information into forms that most suit frontline kaitiaki. This includes developing an online training programme and resource centre – or Pataka Mātauranga – that kaitiaki can use for education, research, future co-management, and planning activities.

The team’s research to date indicates that kaitiaki and hapū have a strong desire to strengthen investigative and analytical approaches to better understand how the learnings of Western science can empower the expression of kaitiakitanga in the domain of Tangaroa.

The training package will be able to be customised to differing hapū contexts locally and nationally and based on a step-by-step, ako-based learning approach. The aim is to ensure that the adoption and uptake of Western science data, information, knowledge, frameworks and tools can be fitted to the short term priorities and/or long term goals of kaitiaki within their own place-based situation.

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