New professorial appointments to grow Māori philosophy and indigenous research capabilities

Published date : Mon, 04 October 2021 12:53 pm
New professorial appointments to grow Māori philosophy and indigenous research capabilities 


Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi (Awanuiārangi) is thrilled to announce three new inaugural professorial appointments: Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith CNZM has been appointed to the inaugural position of Distinguished Professor - Rangahau and Mātauranga Capability at the Wānanga; Sir William Te Rangiua "Pou" Temara, KNZM to the position of Professor of Māori Philosophy; and Dr Alison Green to the position of Professor in the School of Indigenous Graduate Studies.

Awanuiārangi Chief Executive Officer, Professor Wiremu Doherty says the Wānanga feels privileged to have these three top scholars on board.

“Sir Pou is an expert in Te Reo Māori, Tikanga Māori and Philosophy and a distinguished cultural authority on whaikōrero, whakapapa, and karakia – we look forward to the integral role he will play here at Awanuiārangi,” says Professor Doherty.

“Professor Smith plays a critical role in advancing the thought leadership capabilities of indigenous peoples worldwide, contributes extensively to the research community in Aotearoa, and to the development of Māori and Iwi communities – she will no doubt have a significant impact as we seek to further our research capabilities.”

“Professor Green has immense knowledge in how best we can use Māori and Indigenous knowledges, languages and practices to enable our tauira to introduce solutions to key issues faced by our Māori communities in Aotearoa and Indigenous communities worldwide, and we look forward to her significant support and contributions in this space,” says Professor Doherty.


Embedding tikanga Māori in New Zealand law and promoting modern tohunga

As part of his new role at Awanuiārangi, Sir Pou will work with academics, judges and lawyers to create a programme of teaching and learning that embeds tikanga Māori in the common law of New Zealand.

“The programme is a significant and unique undertaking for the institution – it will be taught from Awanuiārangi itself and initially will be aimed at Judges from the different tiers of the judiciary and lawyers,” explains Sir Pou.

Sir Pou will also be helping Awanuiārangi put together a symposium of tohunga to be held later this year.

“The accumulating knowledge and the result of that symposium will be important in the establishment of a diploma in the practices of the modern tohunga.”

Sir Pou says this new position adds another flavour to the already diverse and ever-evolving menu of programme offerings at Awanuiārangi.

“Developments like this help firmly establish Awanuiārangi as a leading institution of mātauranga Māori in Aotearoa, and my advice to students looking to satisfy their hunger to learn more in this space is to expect the unexpected,” says Sir Pou.


Expanding research capabilities

As Professor - Rangahau and Mātauranga Capability, Professor Smith will be focused on building on existing research achievements at Awanuiārangi and investigating the opportunities to drive research excellence that are in alignment with the Wānanga’s Research Strategy.

Previously a long-serving member of the Awanuiārangi Council, Professor Smith says she is looking forward to helping the Wānanga further enhance its research capabilities, alongside the expertise of Professor Te Kani Kingi, Executive Director of Research and innovation.

“We recognise there are areas where Awanuiārangi can play a greater leading role in mātauranga research, and it’s also about ensuring the strengths we have in mātauranga Māori research and teaching, and connections to our whānau, hapū, iwi and hāpori, are respected and recognised as a unique aspect of this Wānanga,” says Professor Smith.

“Together, we’re really going to capitalise on those strengths, our track record, and the opportunities we already have as a Wānanga, and align them further with the aspirations of our iwi and communities, staff and students.”

On the new role, Professor Smith explains her new role will be about working with the talents, opportunities, and relationships we have as Awanuiārangi to grow our potential.

“In a year’s time, I want to be able to look back and see research staff that have flourished even more than they already have, greater research collaborations underway, with more research groups focussing on strong topic areas, and an increasingly visible and vibrant research culture.”

Looking ahead to the role rangatahi of Aotearoa have in the research space, Professor Smith notes, there is a need for rangatahi to dig deep and explore the ideas and aspirations that excite them.

“Our innovation and futures lie in what they strive for — our job here is to prepare them with the mātauranga, tikanga, skills, integrity and support to be successful,” she says.


Kaupapa Māori-informed research a critical part of tertiary landscape 

In her new role as Professor at Awanuiārangi, Professor Green will focus on leading new research projects, and teaching and supporting tauira of the Professional Doctorate programme to undertake student and community-initiated kaupapa Māori-informed research, as well as supporting Awanuiārangi international students from Hawaii and mainland USA as they undertake their doctoral degrees.

Working alongside Head of School Professor Mera Penehira, and Executive Director of Research and innovation, Professor Te Kani Kingi, Professor Green looks forward to helping boost the transformational research already taking place at Awanuiārangi.

“Māori and Indigenous communities want research and solutions that are underpinned by our philosophies and practices and address ‘real world’ problems,” says Professor Green.

“These include the revitalisation of Māori and Indigenous knowledges, languages and practices; the return of land and marine environments to Māori and Indigenous communities to care for, and our own rights to determine the health and wellbeing of our children.”

“Almost every Māori and Indigenous graduate student I have talked to has spoken of ancestors and leaders who fought so their descendants could live better lives, and we know these were the aspirations of our Pacific voyaging ancestors who sailed back and forth to Aotearoa,” says Professor Green.

“The Professional Doctoral programme is set up so that, just like our ancestors, our students can set their sails, use Māori and Indigenous knowledge and evidence, and strive for better futures.”


Pānui i roto i te reo Māori


Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith

Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith

Professor Alison Green

Professor Alison Green

Sir Pou Temara

Sir Pou Temara

About Sir William Te Rangiua "Pou" Temara, KNZM

Of Ngāi Tūhoe, Sir Pou has been a member of the Waitangi Tribunal since 2008 and is currently chair of the Repatriation Advisory Panel at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. He is a member of the Tūhoe Waikaremoana Māori Trust Board, chair of Te Hui Ahurei a Tūhoe, and is on Kingi Tuheitia's 'Council of Twelve.' He was the presenter of Kōrero Mai, Television New Zealand's first Māori language series, and is a director of the Māori unit for Radio New Zealand and appears in many Waka Huia series as an expert commentator on historical affairs. In the 2016 Queen's Birthday Honours, Temara was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit, for services to Māori and education. In the 2021 New Year Honours, he was promoted to Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. Sir Pou was previously Associate Professor and Head of Faculty, Mātauranga Māori, at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi before accepting a Professorship at The University of Waikato. He was also the officiating tohunga at the opening of the wānanga in 1992, and again, in 2012, at the opening of the new buildings. In 2013, Professor Temara received an Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy (Hon Causa) in Māori Development from Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi.


About Professor Linda Tuhiwai Smith, CNZM

Of Ngāti Awa, Ngāti Porou, and Tūhourangi, Distinguished Professor Smith was one of the first Māori woman to be appointed a Fellow of the New Zealand Royal Society in 2016. In the 2013 New Year Honours, Smith was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori and education. In 2017, Smith was selected as one of the Royal Society Te Apārangi's "150 women in 150 words", celebrating the contributions of women to knowledge in New Zealand. She has also been a recipient of the Prime Minister’s Lifetime Achievement Award in Education, and an Honorary Doctorate in Canada. She has been appointed to several significant organisations, including the Waitangi Tribunal, the Māori Economic Development Board and the Marsden Fund, and was recently elected as an honorary member of the American Academic of Arts and Sciences. She is the author of well-known Indigenous studies book, Decolonizing Methodologies: Research and Indigenous People.


About Professor Alison Green

Of Ngāti Pūkeko, Ngāti Hokopū, and Ngāi Tamarawaho, Professor Green holds a PhD in Māori Cultural Studies/Tikanga Māori (2018), a Master of Māori and Pacific Development with First Class Honours (2011), and a Post-graduate Diploma in Māori and Pacific Development with Distinction (2007). She was awarded a Misiweskamik Indigenous Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada in 2019, and a University of Waikato Doctoral Scholarship in 2012. Since 2019, she has been teaching at the Department of Indigenous Studies at the University of Saskatchewan, and is currently Chief Executive of Te Whāriki Takapou, a kaupapa Māori organisation providing Māori sexual and reproductive health promotion, research, and policy and advisory services.