Wally Penetito

Wally Penetito profile picture photograph


TTC (Ardmore), BA (Massey University), PhD. (Victoria University of Wellington)


Wally is a retired public servant and professor of Maori education from VUW (2013). His background is in teaching, sociology of education, and the history of developments (theory, policy and practice in Maori education).

The central theme of his teaching and research is the role of Place-Based Education as an emancipatory strategy linking indigenous studies, social justice and ecological questions and the influence of power relations on these.

Since retirement:
  • Wally holds a Cultural Advisory role with the Education Review Office Te Uepū Māori sector (2013-18);
  • Holds the position of adjunct professor at the University of Canterbury (2016-18);
  • Been National Examiner for PhD Theses for candidates from the University of Auckland, University of Waikato and Auckland University of Technology;
  • Member of research expert panels for Whanganui (Te Kakahu), 2014-16 and University of Waikato (Kia Eke Panuku), 2017;
  • Manager of Ngāti Raukawa, Treaty Claim, Oral and Traditional History Narratives Project involving 20 Hapū Reports, feedback to numerous Crown Forestry Rental Trust Reports (2017-18); and review of Ani Mikaere -Te Kāuru, Te Wānanga o Raukawa thesis ‘Like moths to a flame’.


Penetito, W. (In Press). Contested places in education: The radical potential for ‘being Maori’, in Tomlins-Jahnke, H., Lilley, S., & Zinga, D. (Eds.) Contested Places: Theory, Practice, and New Directions in Indigenous education. Toronto, Canada: Toronto University Press.

Penetito, W. (2015). Choosing to be both provincial and cosmopolitan: Straddling two worlds. In Macfarlane, A., Macfarlane, S., & Webber, M. (Eds.) Sociocultural discourses in education: Theory into practice. Christchurch: Canterbury University Press.

Penetito, W. (2015). In Selwyn Katene (Editor), The fire that kindles hearts: Ten Māori Scholars, p 158-172. Aotearoa, Steel Roberts. ISBN 978-1-927242-88-9.

Penetito, W. (2015). ‘Decolonising education: Nourishing the learning spirit’.Book Reiew. AlterNative, 11(1) p78.

Penetito, W. (2015). Unitec – Review of Māori Education Strategy. Contract to interview staff and write report (2014-15).