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Associate Professor Jacinta Ruru

BA (Wellington), LLM (Otago), PhD (Victoria)

staff_large_ruru_jacintaTena koe. Ko Ngati Raukawa ki Waikato, Ngati Ranginui ki Tauranga me Ngati Maniapoto nga iwi. Ko Pakeha hoki ahau. He roia kaiwhakaako ahau ki te Whare Wananga o Otago. Kia ora koe.

My research focuses on exploring Indigenous peoples' legal rights to own, manage and govern land and water. I currently teach 300-400 level courses 'Maori Land Law' and 'Law and Indigenous Peoples'.

I have led, or co-led, several national and international research projects including on the Common Law Doctrine of Discovery, Indigenous rights to freshwater and multidisciplinary understandings of landscapes.

I am co-director of the University of Otago Research Cluster for Natural Resources Law and have recently completed contributing to the 'Old Problems New Solutions' Landcare Research project. I have organised several conferences including the "In Good Faith" Treaty of Waitangi Symposium (2007) and the International Indigenous Legal Water Forum (2009). I am organising the The Australia New Zealand Legal History Conference (November 2013).

Significant research awards include the University of Otago prestigious Rowheath Trust and Carl Smith Medal for outstanding scholarly achievement across all disciplines (2010) and the Fulbright Nga Pae o te Maramatanga Senior Maori Scholar Award (2012).

Research Interests

Indigenous Peoples comparative law (including rights to own, govern and manage water, land, foreshore and seabed, and national parks), law and landscapes, law and geography, Maori land law, Treaty of Waitangi.


Tel: +64 3 479 8833
Office: 8th Floor - 8N11


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