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Understanding New Zealand’s science sector from a Te Ao Māori perspective

A postgraduate research opportunity at the University of Otago.


Academic background
Business, Humanities, Sciences, Health Sciences
Host campus
Master’s, PhD
Dr Katharina Ruckstuhl and Dr Diane Ruwhiu


This is an exciting opportunity to explore how New Zealand’s science and technology sector can work better for Māori. This is a very broad theme and can be addressed in different ways and from different disciplinary perspectives. We invite suggestions for research topics, but you may also be interested in the following:

  • Iwi/hapū experience of science and technology
  • Māori organisational practices for science and technology innovation
  • Mātauranga Māori as an enabler of sci-tech innovation
  • Māori physical and engineering scientists as entrepreneurs
  • How Māori entrepreneurs use science and technology to grow their enterprises
  • Māori scientist identities, roles and practices
  • How research organisations implement Māori science policy such as Vision Mātauranga
  • The key factors that enable science and technology uptake in an industry relevant to Māori (e.g. agriculture, aquaculture, forestry, farming, etc.)
  • Māori intermediaries in the science and technology sector
  • Māori science and technology communities of practice

The research is part of an ongoing study into building New Zealand’s capacity for effective and equitable use of science and technology for social and commercial benefit. This Masters ($15,000 plus fees) or PhD scholarship of ($30,000 plus fees) is funded by the Science for Technology and Innovation Challenge and the successful applicant will be supervised by Vision Mātauranga researchers from the Building New Zealand’s Capacity project.

There are a number of ways that your research may be constructed, therefore your background may be in a number of different areas. Key to success in this project is demonstrated:

  • confidence in te reo Māori settings,
  • familiarity with Māori concepts, theories, kaupapa, tikanga; and,
  • understanding of Māori organisational forms, e.g. iwi, hapū, businesses, enterprises.

We welcome proposals for qualitative or quantitative research. Key will be an interest in science, technology and innovation that benefits Māori.

Prospective Research Masters or PhD students interested in developing a research question within this broad topic at the University of Otago are invited to contact Dr Katharina Ruckstuhl. Please send a copy of your CV and academic record along with a brief covering letter explaining why you are interested in the project and any particular experiences or skills that you would bring.

Applications will remain open until the position is filled.


Dr Katharina Ruckstuhl
Tel   +64 3 479 4916

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