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Source: New Zealand Parliament – Hansard

Question No. 3—Research, Science and Innovation

3. WILLOW-JEAN PRIME (Labour—Northland) to the Minister of Research, Science and Innovation: What recent announcements has she made about strengthening Māori knowledge in science and innovation?

Hon Dr MEGAN WOODS (Minister of Research, Science and Innovation): Last week, I announced the 16 projects receiving a total of $3.9 million in funding from the 2021 round of the Vision Mātauranga Capability Fund, each of which will strengthen Māori knowledge, capabilities, skills, and networks in the science and innovation system. Supporting our Māori researchers is essential for the aspirations of individuals, whānau, Māori communities, Māori organisations, and New Zealand, and this Government is proud to stand in support of these projects.

Willow-Jean Prime: What are some of the successful projects?

Hon Dr MEGAN WOODS: With $250,000 of funding from the fund, Manaaki Whenua will partner with the Ngāi Tahu Māori Rock Art Trust to investigate the ecology of the 14 nationally culturally significant rock art sites around Ōpihi in South Canterbury, to tell us more about tīpuna and our past. Te Ruapekapeka Trust and the Victoria University of Wellington will also receive $250,000 to digitally construct aspects of the Ruapekapeka heritage pā site using virtual reality technology.

Willow-Jean Prime: Why is it important that we support a kaupapa Māori approach to research, science, and innovation?

Hon Dr MEGAN WOODS: A kaupapa Māori approach to research, development, and innovation will see impact and growth within iwi and Māori organisations, as well as strengthening science and innovation for all New Zealanders. Ensuring cultural knowledge is maintained, protected, and still owned by Māori and iwi will also preserve the uniqueness of Aotearoa and the richness of our cultural heritage.