MBIE announces $33M for mātauranga Māori in Budget
As part of Budget 2020 and the COVID Response and Recovery Fund, the Government has announced a $401.3 million package over 4 years for research, science and innovation, including $33m towards mātauranga Māori.
Te Tira Whakamātaki would like to congratulate Minister Woods and the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment (MBIE) for securing $33 million for ‘expanding the impact of Vision Mātauranga’ as part of a wider $299 million package for research, science and innovation initiatives over the next four years.
“Te Tira Whakamātaki has long been concerned about the inequities displayed in the research, science and innovation sector. Inequities that disproportionately impact Māori researchers and Māori research investment” says Te Tira Whakamātaki Operations Manager Tame Malcolm. Te Tira Whakamātaki has been working with agencies to address these concerns for some time, but have been unsatisfied with the lack of investment to support system change, and a lack of momentum in the system to do the right thing by Māori. “As a Māori environmental not-for-profit with a research focus we are excited to see MBIE investment in an area that can address what we, and many others, have been lobbying for for a number of years”.
This investment supports the signals seen in MBIE’s 2019 Draft Research, Science and Innovation Strategy Discussion Document, a document that notes mātauranga Māori, and Māori representation and participation as vital for the growth and prosperity of New Zealand’s research, science and innovation sector. It also supports findings from Te Tira Whakamātaki conducted research into the Vision Mātauranga policy.
“Our research found that science leaders want a reassessment and new articulation of the policies intent, because they believe it has largely failed to deliver on increasing Māori participation in research, science and innovation”, says Te Tira Whakamātaki Operations Manager Tame Malcolm.
Mr Malcolm explains the key concerns of participants were:
* inappropriate funding mechanisms that restrict access to Māori wanting to participate in the system
* a lack of long-term investment in highly successful Māori programmes
* an unequal power balance that has created unfair and unsustainable workload issues for Māori researchers
* and systemic racism in part evidenced in the continued devaluing of Māori systems of measurement.
As a result of this announcement, Te Tira Whakamātaki is heartened by the long-term investment and looks forward to participating in conversations between MBIE and the wider Māori research community about what initiatives support our collective aspirations, demonstrate best practice and honour the Treaty partnership.