Minister impressed with Maori Social Science agenda

08 Dec, 2010
 
The Hon Tariana Turia and Sir Paul Reeves
A speech from Maori Party Co-Leader, the Hon Tariana Turia, to open the Maori Association of Social Science (MASS) conference, suggested there was a fascinating array of topics close to the hearts of Maori social scientists.

The Hon Tariana Turia officially opened the MASS 2010 Conference this month at AUT along with Sir Paul Reeves, AUT Chancellor, and conference attendees.

Having opened the inaugural conference two years ago the Minister noted she was most impressed with the diverse range of indigenous discovery expressed throughout the MASS programme.

MASS conference website

Conference themes

The three-day conference, from December 1-3 was hosted by AUT’s School of Languages and Social Sciences.

The key theme for this year’s conference was ‘Working with Maori Communities’ and explores social science research and practice in Maori Communities. Presentations about the processes, ethics, values, reflections and feedback on existing communities took place.

Maori social science practice was also explored with papers describing the outcomes, success stories, impact and challenges arising from Maori social science work in communities.

The conference themes around community engagement are designed to encourage Māori social scientists to disseminate responsive Māori research from their studies on diverse social issues in this country.

Keynote speakers for the conference included Margo Greenwood, Associate Professor, University of Nothern British Columbia, Helen Moewaka Barnes, Director, Whariki Health Research Centre and Evan Te Ahu Poata-Smith, Senior lecturer at AUT.

Find out more about AUT’s School of Languages and Social Sciences
MASS Keynote speaker profiles

Maori social science

The Hon Tariana Turia said the conference and its papers were a fascinating glimpse into the matters that occupy the hearts and minds of the Maori social science community.

“In essence, this is all about our whānau, hapu and iwi, putting themselves under the microscope, the magnifying glass, or indeed the video camera – looking critically at what their needs are; understanding their priorities, and reflecting on issues they seek to address,” she says.

Hon Tariana Turia full MASS speech
Full list of conference speakers and papers

Whānau Ora

The Minister also took the opportunity to talk about the Whānau Ora approach. “Essentially it is about whānau taking responsibility for whānau. It places whānau at the centre and empowers them to lead the development of solutions for their own transformation.  

“At the heart of Whānau Ora is the concept of building on whānau strengths and capability, growing whānau connections, supporting the development of whānau leadership and enhancing best outcomes for whānau.