Mātauranga as knowledge, process and practice in Aotearoa New Zealand (2020)
Type of ContentChapters
PublisherCenter for Open Science
EditorsThornton, T.Bhagwat, S.
The future of Aotearoa New Zealand’s biodiversity is intimately linked to the health of Māori environmental knowledge, the ability to work within different philosophical traditions, and a willingness to work at the intersections of philosophy, cultural practice and science. Māori environmental philosophies and knowledge systems (mātauranga) are intricately rooted in and shaped by Pacific pathways, and shaped by the oral traditions that connect Pacific journeys, encounters with new landscapes, and the ongoing socio-environmental and political experiences of today. Ecological knowledge has a particularly important role within this mātauranga knowledge system, and as such is deeply embedded in tribal histories. The pairing of Māori environmental knowledge with a range of other scientific tools, models and analyses is a trend that will help provide beneficial indicators of population and ecosystem health, that will in turn feed the growth and continuance of mātauranga. Recent laws have pioneered co-management solutions that embody partnership with Māori tribal groups, and enable customary responsibilities. Ethical data management guidelines, that draw on a foundation of Māori philosophies, ethics and practices, are in development for biobanking and genetic or genomic research. Museum and herbarium data are also increasingly being linked to cultural knowledge and relationships. For practitioners, access is a prerequisite to practice; locking up the environment, and locking up collections in museums, acts to alienate Māori and reduces capacity to respond to both cultural prerogatives and national challenges. Scientists who work with Māori environmental knowledge or mātauranga more broadly are part of a shifting inter-disciplinary landscape of solution building at national and international scales, where considerations of intellectual property rights, ethical research partnerships, data sovereignty and community empowerment all contribute to best outcomes.
CitationWehi PM,Whaanga H,Watene K,Steeves TE (2020). Mātauranga as knowledge, process and practice in Aotearoa New Zealand. In Thornton T, Bhagwat S (Ed.), Handbook of Indigenous Environmental Knowledge: Global Themes and Practice.Center for Open Science.
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ANZSRC Fields of Research05 - Environmental Sciences::0502 - Environmental Science and Management::050208 - Māori Environmental Knowledge
05 - Environmental Sciences::0502 - Environmental Science and Management::050205 - Environmental Management
41 - Environmental sciences::4104 - Environmental management::410401 - Conservation and biodiversity
RightsAll rights reserved unless otherwise stated
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