Rangatiratanga in the context of Lake Ellesmere/Te Waihora : identifying the conditions necessary for the exercise and expression of tribal authority over tribal resources.
Thesis DisciplineEnvironmental Sciences
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Science
In a climate of administrative reform, the Government is attempting to address the Treaty of Waitangi and to give practical significance to its guarantees. This study assumes that without an understanding of terms used in the Treaty, attempts at its implementation face misunderstanding and confusion. Thus, the study begins by defining "rangatiratanga" as guaranteed in the Maori text of the Treaty. It proposes that rangatiratanga, within the framework of Maori tradition, is a process through which leadership is defined and decisions made. Fundamental to this process is a view of the world which recognises the interrelatedness} of all elements in nature. Findings from a study of Lake Ellesmere/Te Waihora and Ngai Tahu rangatiratanga suggest that Ngai Tahu face the task of reassessing their tribal structure after many years of European domination. Guarantees given in the Treaty suggest that the 'Government should actively support Ngai Tahu in this process but that the imposition of a uniform "tribal model" is inappropriate. In addition, if rangatiratanga is to be expressed in the context of Lake Ellesmere/Te Waihora, the interlocking nature of resource use within the lake's catchment points to the need for a partnership between all agencies involved in its management.- This can only occur where there is a convergence in attitude to environmental management on the part of both "partners".