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

Assessing marine ecosystems to improve management

Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge researchers are hoping that marine health data gathered on a recent field trip to Queen Charlotte Sounds will support more integrated management of the ecosystem.

Developing ecosystem-based management principles for NZ

The Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge leadership team have proposed seven major principles for ecosystem-based management (EBM) in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Growing a successful and sustainable Māori marine economy

The Sustainable Seas research team led by Dr John Reid and Dr Jason Mika have identified five key factors that will drive growth of the Māori marine economy: