Joshua Hitchcock

Training For The New Economy

In Te Ao Māori on May 21, 2016 at 2:40 pm

Ka Tōnuitanga is a blog focused on discussing issues of Māori development.  Today I kick off a series of articles discussing the future of the Māori economy as a forerunner to a book that I am compiling entitled “Ka Tōnuitanga: The Māori Economy in the 21st Century”

With the new Government Budget set to be announced next week, a plethora of pre-budget announcements are being made to build a momentum of positive news stories.  One such announcement last week was the expansion of the Māori and Pasifika Trades Training Scheme:

An additional $9.6 million over four years will provide for more Māori and Pasifika Trades Training (MPTT) as demand for the programme continues to grow, Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce and Maori Development Minister Te Ururoa Flavell say.

“This funding will provide places for 2,500 young Māori and Pasifika learners in MPTT programmes this year, and 3,400 next year, up from just 1,200 in 2014,” Mr Joyce says.

“We are targeting 5,000 learners annually by 2019 as we encourage young Māori and Pasifika to take up a trade and help meet some of the emerging shortages in construction and infrastructure trades particularly.”

Source: Beehive.Govt.NZ

The increased funding is something to be celebrated, although as Morgan points our on twitter, there are problematic issues with such an approach.  Historically, Māori were seen as only being skilled enough to engage in the trades.  Māori boys were taught how to be farmers and factory workers, Māori girls to be seamstresses.  While we should not disparage the trades, as there is a real demand for these skills, I strongly believe that we should be promoting a more diverse education platform for Māori youth.  Where is the money for our young entrepreneurs to develop the next Xero?  For our fashion designers to create the next World?  For our film makers to be the next Peter Jackson?  And while Universities are producing large numbers of quality Māori lawyers, where are the resources to develop our Māori accountants and business managers?  Our food technicians to help drive the likes of Miraka, Miere, and Tohu forwards?  Our scientists and engineers to pursue sustainable energy production?  Or our doctors and nurses to provide kaupapa health services?

One-off announcements such as the expansion of the trades training programme is a clear indication of a lack of strategic thinking around improving Māori education and developing a workforce that can not just survive, but also thrive in the modern economy.  Instead of a strategic, long-term plan to develop the collective skill base required for Māori to thrive in the 21st Century we instead get more of the same 19th century thinking that has failed Māori for generations.  The recently released KPMG and ASB report “Māui Rau: Adapting in a Changing World” makes it clear that  a new approach to Māori development is needed.  The Report sets out 14 Calls to Action.  Over the next several weeks, I will discuss each in turn and carry on the conversation started by Māui Rau and, in doing so, aim to build on the strategic framework for Māori development.  The 14 Calls to Action are:

  1. Redefine success
  2. Seek inspiration
  3. Be sustainable
  4. Share the stories
  5. Enable succession
  6. Leverage talent
  7. Be tech-enabled
  8. Demystify the picture
  9. Build new-world education models
  10. Redefine our market opportunity
  11. Create connected enterprises
  12. Clarify the horizon
  13. Invest in prosperity
  14. Embrace urban populations

There are some wonderful ideas in this list and I look forward to exploring them in more detail over the next several weeks.  Let me know your whakaaro in the comments below.

Man, Know Thyself

In Te Ao Māori on May 13, 2016 at 12:54 am

If we are talking about who needs to apologise, the National Government needs to apologise for the disgraceful actions that it has inflicted upon Māori in the past.  Who remembers Don Brash in Ōrewa?  Who remembers that speech?  Who remembers the hate that was whipped up from that dog whistle, from that Government over that?

This was a comment made by Rino Tirikatene, the current Labour member for Te Tai Tonga, speaking in General Debate in Parliament on Wednesday 11 May 2016.  A member of the party that confiscated the foreshore and seabed in 2004, invaded Ngāi Tūhoe in October 2007, and refused to endorse the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

Who remembers?  Indeed.

Sunday Reading

In Lifestyle, Te Ao Māori on February 14, 2016 at 10:00 am

A new weekly feature, where I share some of my favourite reads from the past week.

#1 The Spinoff Interview of Mana Magazine editor, Leonie Hayden. A wonderful interview with Leonie covering her role at Mana Magazine and the visibility of Māori in the New Zealand media.

#2 Again from The Spinoff, a list of the top 50 nonfiction books by, or about, Māori.  Following on from their top 50 New Zealand non fiction books which suffered from a complete white wash, amends were well and truly made with this list of cracking reads and resources from Te Ao Māori.

#3 After 5 years of conversation, the Independent Constitutional Working Group, established by the Iwi Leaders Group, and Chaired by Margaret Mutu and Moana Jackson, released their findings and recommendations for alternative constitutional arrangements.

#4 Also in the legal sphere, the Waitangi Tribunal released a draft chapter on its urgent inquiry into the reforms of Te Ture Whenua Māori 1993.

#5 From Media Diversified, the thought-provoking piece entitled “Diversity is Dead, and Whiteness Killed It”

Share your favourite pieces in the comments below!