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Investing in Maori science & innovation
23 June 2016

Investing in Māori science & innovation

Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce and Māori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell today announced the successful recipients of the 2016 Te Pūnaha Hihiko - Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund investment round.

“A total of $3.97 million will be invested in 33 new programmes over the next two years,” Mr Joyce says.

“We’ve made a substantial investment compared with previous rounds with more than double the total funding being invested compared with 2015. This increased investment in the science and innovation potential of Māori knowledge, resources and people will have strong economic, social and environmental benefits for New Zealand.”

This is the fourth round for the Fund which was established to grow skills and capacity for Māori participation in science and innovation and support outcomes that benefit New Zealand.

“This Fund lines up well with the Māori-Crown Economic Development Strategy, He kai kei aku ringa, which provides a blueprint for a productive, innovative, and export-oriented Māori economy,” Mr Flavell says.

“The investment we’re announcing today will grow Māori researcher skills and further develop important links between Māori and research organisations.”

The wide range of programmes funded this year includes: Developing a land use opportunity database and decision support system for the Ngāti Porou rohe to better inform researchers and Ngāti Porou about options to create enduring prosperity and enhance Ngāti Porou mana and identity; Developing the Earth Science capacity and expertise of Makaawhio, the mana whenua in Te Wāhipounamu World Heritage site. Through better understanding of local geology and landscape forming processes, the rūnanga will build confidence, skills and capacity to understand opportunities of natural resources and risks of natural hazards and encourage young people to develop interests in both scientific and traditional knowledge.The better management of finfish using mātauranga and modern scientific tools within Customary Protection Areas (CPAs) in Canterbury, Otago and Southland has the potential to address the decline of key customary species in coastal fisheries. The team, consisting of members of the Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu Mahinga Kai unit and research/academic staff from the University of Otago, will work alongside community members to develop effective recapture assessments to better assess population sizes and catch rates.

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