Principle of kaitiakitanga

Kaitiakitanga ensures that Māori rights are actively protected through honourable conduct, fair processes, robust consultation, and good decision-making.

In the context of the University, this means actively protecting Māori student, staff, and stakeholder rights and interests in relation to University activities.

Application of the principle of kaitiakitanga

In applying the principle of kaitiakitanga, the University commits to active protection of Māori rights and interests in relation to its key activities, such as course and qualification development, research development and funding, planning and business development, and Māori professional development. This principle also ensures that the diverse needs of Māori are reflected across all of the University’s processes, facilities and use of resources.

Course and qualification development related to Māori

All new courses, majors and qualifications must respond fully to the question of the proposals’ relevance to the Treaty of Waitangi as per the Academic Approvals Handbook. Further information is provided in the proposal templates via the PEAC system in SharePoint. If assistance is required to develop an A5 statement, which is the section of the proposal template about relevance to the Treaty of Waitangi, email Simply indicating ‘not relevant to Māori’ is unacceptable and can cause delays in advancing the proposal.

Māori human ethics

The Human Ethics guidelines require that all researchers have responsibility to ensure that their research conforms with Te Tiriti o Waitangi Statute. All Human Ethics applications should respond fully to 3.2 of the Human Ethics Guidelines. If assistance is required to do that, email

While developing human ethics applications, proposers should consider ways to add Māori dimensions to their project, to involve Māori people in their project, to conduct their research in ways that value tikanga Māori, and to think about how their research could benefit Māori.

Māori intellectual property

Section 5.1.8 of the Intellectual Property Policy provides guidance on the protection of mātauranga Māori as intellectual property. Staff should engage with the Research Development Advisor (Māori) to discuss any Māori IP matters. If necessary, discussions can also be held with Toihuarewa, as per the Intellectual Property Policy.

Māori research funding

As noted in the Principle of Partnership, a Mātauranga Māori Research Fund has made available funding for staff wanting to develop their capability in Māori research and/or build relationships with Māori communities.

Relevance to Māori in business cases

All new business case proposals must respond fully to the ‘relevance to Māori’ section as per the instructions in the template. It is important to address this section properly and time should be allocated to engage with the Office of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Māori) prior to submission.

Māori professional development

As noted in the Principle of Rangatiratanga section, Māori professional development courses are available for staff, including Te Hāpai. HR also provide new staff orientation/induction, which includes a pōhiri at Te Herenga Waka marae and facilitated discussion about the University’s Māori values. The Centre for Academic Development also provides professional development around Māori teaching and learning.

Although Te Hāpai is targeted at beginner’s level, a number of Māori staff members already possess these skills and other forms of professional development may be sought. Examples of such courses may include Kura Reo (week long intensive immersion courses). Managers should consider requests such as these from Māori staff who do not have the need to attend Te Hāpai. Toihuarewa will, at times, identify Māori academic staff development needs and respond with support. For example, professional development support has been provided for Māori Knowledge and Development related PBRF portfolio writing, representing Māori interests as a representative on University committees, and academic promotion applications.