Rosemary Rangitauira

Following the ‘Yellow Brick Road’ - Mātau Taiao

Apr 13, 2021

The melody from the classic movie Wizard of Oz echoes as Jacinta Ruru explains what inspired her to attend university, and her ambition to help create a more just society in Aotearoa. Jacinta, who affiliates to Raukawa and Ngāti Ranginui, specialises in the research areas of indigenous peoples and the law. She is a professor at the University of Otago’s Faculty of Law and a co-director at Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, the country’s Māori Centre of Research Excellence. Her career has partly been inspired by the short story, Yellow Brick Road, by Witi Ihimaera which trails a Māori family travelling from Waituhi near Gisborne to Wellington, which is described in the pūrākau (story) as the Emerald City. On their travels, they run out of gas and no one stops to help them. The pūrākau cemented for Jacinta the social prejudice … Read More

Driven to serve - Mātau Taiao

Apr 13, 2021

Driven, accountable, unafraid to test limits and connected to the communities she serves are traits that come to mind when thinking about Dr Anne-Marie Jackson. (Ngāti Whātua, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahu o Whangaroa, Ngāti Wai) She specialises in Māori physical education and health research disciplines while incorporating tikanga Māori and Te Tiriti o Waitangi into her research work and the tertiary programmes that she has developed. Anne-Marie currently works at the University of Otago and holds leadership roles in: Te Koronga – A research excellence group set up to supervise and train Māori research students and non-Māori research tauira (students) who want to work with Māori communities on Māori research topics as well as the Indigenous Science Research Theme. She co-founded Te Koronga with Dr Hauiti Hakopa; and Te Tiaki Mahinga Kai – A project led by Associate … Read More

‘Knowledge is power’ - Mātau Taiao

Mar 05, 2021

Mā te mōhiotanga, ka mārama – mā te māramatanga, ka ora. (Through awareness comes understanding, and enlightenment empowers well-being) Dr Tahu Kukutai embodies this whakataukī (proverb), a wahine (woman) who is driven by a purpose to unveil the stories behind population statistics. Tahu specialises in Māori population research, Indigenous data sovereignty, Ethic and racial classification. She currently works at the National Institute of Demographic and Economic Analysis at the University of Waikato. While preparing this profile, Tahu flicked Te Āki an extract she penned called ‘Finding Tahu’ for the book, Ngā Kete Mātauranga – Māori Scholars at the Research Interface. A fascinating read which among her tuhinga (writings) she talks about her parents’ determination for her and her siblings to excel in education,  how demographers report on Indigenous Peoples and how these groups experience different fertility and mortality … Read More

Driven to reconnect Māori with te taiao - Mātau Taiao

Mar 05, 2021

Mihi mai ki a Jade Rangiwhiua Hyslop whose area of research is river restoration and kaupapa Māori. Passionate about the outdoors, learning and improving the environment in socially-just and innovative ways, she works at Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research in Kirikiriroa (Hamilton). A budding researcher in its Manaaki Taiao Māori research team, Jade wants to encourage and support tāngata whenua to lead environment restoration projects. “I hope to encourage them in ways that foster a Māori worldview that aligns with Māori aspirations; ideally in ways that are holistic and multi-dimensional. While also supporting the social, cultural and economic lived realities of Māori people, as well as providing environmental gains.” Her time in Australia inspired Jade’s aspiration to support and manaaki tāngata whenua here. “Working as a water scientist in Sydney, I noticed that the Indigenous community was not involved in the … Read More

Nudged by Te Ao Māori to explore science - Mātau Taiao

Dec 16, 2020

Stories of the afterlife and the impact of colonisation on Ngāi Maori nudged Sylvia Tapuke on a path of exploring kaupapa Māori research and western science.  She hails from Ngāi Tūhoe, Hineuru, Ngāti Manawa, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Raukawa ki te Tonga, Te Arawa and Te Whakatōhea. Talking to Sylvia makes you feel at home in her company and embraced by the humble essence of her lineage. She laughs as she reminisces about being called a whakaputa mōhio, a know-it-all when she was younger because she was inquisitive about the environment she grew up in. “I have always been curious and interested in the world, about why things happen and how they come to be,” says Sylvia. In more recent years, she has become fascinated by how her ancestors viewed the world and why they did things the way they did. Currently … Read More

Drawn from a young age to biology and science - Mātau Taiao

Dec 16, 2020

The allure of the white lab coat and inventing new treatments for people’s health inspired Dr Kimiora Henare of Te Aupōuri and Te Rarawa to become a cancer biologist and biomedical scientist. Kimiora resides in Tāmaki Makaurau – working at the University of Auckland as a research fellow in the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences. His love of science and the human body started young while growing up in Te Whanganui-a-Tara. “As a child, I read kid-friendly human biology books from the library. I think Mum thought I would become a medical doctor.” Kimiora, who has tribal connections to Whangape in Northland, says he was always fascinated by science and biology at school and eventually drawn to focus on cancer. “One of my favourite kaiwhakaako (lecturers) who inspired me is, Dr … Read More

Reconnecting with taha Māori on the shores of Lake Taupō - Unsorted

Nov 19, 2020

In one day with her kaumatua (elder) on the southern shores of Lake Taupō, Yvonne Taura (Ngāiterangi, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāti Hauā, Ngāti Uenuku, Ngāti Tūwharetoa) found her future career ambition was to raise awareness in restoring New Zealand’s wetlands back to health.  In 2002 and in the middle of an identity crisis, Yvonne Taura returned home to Aotearoa from Australia. She sought refuge at Pākā (Hallets Bay – Tūrangi) with her whāngai parents; her namesake and Aunt, Yvonne, and Uncle Te Rangituamatatoru Tamaira (Ngā Runuku).   Now a kairangahau Māori (Māori researcher) at Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research in Hamilton, Yvonne says when she came home to Aotearoa she was sent to her koroua (elder), Rakato Te Rangiita of Ngāti Ranuku who lived on the southern side of … Read More

Enhancing the lives of tāngata whenua - Mātau Taiao

Nov 19, 2020

Fiona Wiremu (Ngāi Tūhoe | Ngāti Ranginui) is driven to do all she can to enhance the lives of tāngata whenua and that’s evident in the multiple research areas she covers. These include mātauranga Māori (Māori knowledge) such as te reo Māori, culture and identity, Whai Rawa (Māori Economies), Te Taiao (Natural Environment), Mauri Ora (Human Flourishing and Wellbeing) and Māori community self-development initiatives. “I love my whānau and it’s because of them I do what I do. I want them to be well and to exercise equal rights like other New Zealanders, and for those same values to be experienced by all Māori.” Fiona is an executive director at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi where she teaches Indigenous Business and is the chair of two kaupapa Māori hauora / health entities; Te Puna Ora o Mataatua and Med Central … Read More