Whaia te Mana Māori Whakahaere Tōtika ki Tangaroa – in pursuit of Māori governance jurisdiction models over marine resources

Man racing a traditional carved waka

We are exploring and developing innovative governance tools for the marine environment while enhancing relationships between Māori, the Government and industry.

Project leader: Robert Joseph, University of Waikato

Duration: September 2017 – June 2019 
Budget: $530,000 
Status: Ongoing 

Our aim is to co-develop and produce research on 21st century Māori governance jurisdiction models, frameworks and best practices, to support ecosystem-based management (EBM) for our marine resources that is consistent with Māori tikanga and mātauranga. 

Māori governance jurisdiction describes the right and responsibility of Māori to govern themselves; to make decisions for the future; and to exercise a full range of political and legal power and authority over their people, land and resources including marine resources. There are several forms of jurisdiction that are relevant to the governance of marine resources: 

  • Regulatory jurisdiction – the regulation of health and safety standards, customary rights, zoning and environmental hazards. 
  • Territorial jurisdiction – the authority to enact laws and regulations that apply solely within a specified territory. 
  • Personal jurisdiction –  the authority to pass laws in relation to particular persons due to characteristics of those persons. 
  • Subject matter jurisdiction – the authority to pass laws on specified subjects, e.g. customary fishing rights and customary marine title. 

This project is a collaboration between the University of Waikato Te Mata Hautū Taketake Māori and Indigenous Governance Centre (MIGC) and Te Tau Ihu o Te Waka-a-Māui (Top of the South Island) Māori groups in the Tasman and Golden Bays area. 

Latest news and updates

Interview: Stew Robertson, Abel Tasman Ecotours/Tasman Bay Guardians

Stew Robertson has been a participant in research workshops for projects focused in Tasman-Golden Bay. He is involved with the Nelson Biodiversity Forum and founded the Tasman Bay Guardians in 2017.

Understanding food webs to help manage coastal resources

A study of coastal food webs has revealed how ecosystem-based approaches to marine management could improve management of fish stocks and biodiversity in our changing coastal ocean.

Sharing our latest sedimentation science

In a workshop hosted in Wellington in early May, NIWA and Victoria University of Wellington researchers shared their latest findings on the effects of sediment on both shallow water and deep-sea species with iwi and stakeholders.