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Leadership Wānanga 2010

15-16 April 2010 - Waipapa Marae


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The first wānanga for the MANU AO Leadership Course was held in collaboration with Ngā Pae o te Maramatanga at Waipapa Marae, Auckland University on 15-16 April 2010.

The wānanga was opened by Dr Charles Royal, Director of Ngā Pae who shared his thoughts on good practice Māori leadership and in particular the cultural concepts that underpin it.

Throughout the two day wānanga the participants engaged with various Māori leaders from a variety of professions who shared their thoughts on Māori leadership within a traditional and contemporary context. The first session keynote speaker was Justice Joe Williams who spoke about being in an appointed leadership role and how this differed from traditional leadership roles that were defined by whakapapa and the mandate of the people. The second session was a session based on western leadership theories delivered by Colin Cox and Lena Gray. This session challenged the participants to look at what leadership styles they employed in their own work environments.

During the evening guest speaker Ella Henry (AUT) spoke about the challenges she faces as a Māori female academic and how she managed her life as an academic, mother, wife, and community leader. She talked about "keeping it real" by staying true to yourself and cultural values on your academic journey.

On day two Dr Manuka Henare presented on traditional Māori leadership and how key values from traditional society can provide pathways for good practice leadership in contemporary society. The second session was with John Tamihere who discussed social and cultural relationships. John provided an overview of Waipereira trust and how the organisation intended on implementing the new Whānau Ora plan with their programmes.

The final presenter at the wānanga was Dr Mereta Kawharu who spoke on community and iwi relationships from a Māori woman's academic perspective. A key part of Mereta's session focussed on the difficulties of juggling academia with iwi commitments in particular that working with your iwi is often more challenging than working in the University community. She also noted that this engagement with Māori communities is not satisfactorily recognised in terms of PBRF and academic promotion within the institutions and that this continues to be an unresolved issue for Māori academics.


1-2 July 2010 - Rehua Marae 

The second wānanga was held at Rehua Marae, Canterbury University in Christchurch on 1 and 2 July 2010.

The wānanga was opened by Tā Tipene O'Regan AVC Māori at Canterbury University who provided his view of matauranga Māori and its potential as a cross/pan disciplinary methodology within Universities. He also spoke about the main characteristics of Māori Leadership derived from his own experiences, using his own personal journey from childhood through to the present day he highlighted his understanding of leadership. Tā Tipene spent the majority of day one at the wānanga supporting the kaupapa also being the guest speaker at dinner on Thursday night.

The second session speaker was Aroha Mead the Pou Kairangi Rangahau at Victoria University. Aroha spoke about Māori academics being more global and bringing the global to the community. She provided an insight into her role as a member of the IUCN and how this enables her to provide a voice for Māori globally.

The third session was with Professor Paul Tapsell, Dean of Te Tumu, School of Māori Pacific and Indigenous studies. Paul talked about the politics of Māori Academia. He spoke about the lack of senior Māori Academics and how those that are in senior positions must actively support Māori Academic staff in their institutions. The key idea that Paul highlighted was that leadership was derived from the collective and fundamentally to be a good leader you needed a supportive and motivated group.

The final presenters at the wānanga were Mark Solomon Chief Executive of Te Rūnanga o Ngai Tahu and Sacha McMeeking senior policy advisor for Te Rūnanga o Ngai Tahu. Mark talked about operating in consistence with Ngai Tahu values and the challenges of incorporating tikanga into business practice. He also spoke about insuring that iwi leadership is accountable to iwi members. Sacha highlighted the challenges of moving from academia into the corporate iwi environment.

The second wānanga provided more time for participants to engage in discussion around key areas of concern within academia. Participants were given focus questions to prompt discussion related to ideas raised from the first wānanga. The questions that participants answered were;

  1. Discuss The impact of community/iwi commitments on PBRF and how can this be incorporated into PBRF.
  2. Define community.
  3. How does tikanga inform contemporary Māori Leadership?
  4. What is the role of Academic research in Māori Leadership?

 2-3 September 2010 - Te Herenga Waka Marae


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The final wānanga in Wellington provided an opportunity for participant to engage with key female political leaders that highlighted the importance of mana wāhine in their leadership roles. There were also workshops held to engage participants in the PBRF process and Early Career planning. The last day of the wānanga was dedicated to oral presentations given by all participants on their reflections on Māori Leadership within their institutions and society in general. The final wānanga brought together all the ideas from the previous wānanga and participants began to see the broader issues around being a Māori academic and the ways they could apply the various leadership qualities they had learnt within their respective roles.

© Te Kahui Amokura 2010