Exploring Mātauranga Māori and Volcanic Hazards
In a landscape that is constantly changing, mātauranga Māori and mātuaranga-a-iwi have developed, listening to the tohu and environmental changes that have occurred and using these to provide forecasts of potentially destructive volcanic activity. Prof Jon Procter (Muaūpoko, Ngāti Apa, and Ngāi Tahu) of Massey University presents this journey toward a new form of tangata tiaki and processes of disaster risk reduction based on mātuaranga-a-iwi, science, and technology.
Tuesday 12 December, 12pm – 1pm
In collaboration with the Geoscience Society of New Zealand, we are excited to present, ‘He Haerenga Mōrearea – A Hazardous Journey; Exploring Mātauranga Māori and Volcanic Hazards’.
Mātauranga Māori and mātuaranga-a-iwi are unique to Aotearoa. They have guided a general understanding of our land and provided more specific insights into volcanism that parallel many of the of the problems that scientific research is trying to solve today. Rūaumoko and expressions of Rūaumoko on the surface of Te Ika-a-Maui have shaped our cultural and physical landscape. This constant activity and changing surface have contributed to the development of new knowledge and mātuaranga since Māori first settled Aotearoa. The related mātuaranga recognises the source of magma deep inside the earth, its connection to the wider Pacific and the Pacific Ring of fire, and connecting Aotearoa to areas of volcanism in Rangitāhua and further afield to Hawaiki.
Our whenua has been shaped by volcanoes that have power to influence the development of iwi and hapu and are seen as entities with specific personalities. The eruptions that have occurred over the last 1000 yrs have guided our waka, provided navigational markers in the sky, and created new fertile land for settlement. In recent times the tohu and environmental changes that have occurred in our landscape were listened to and applied to provide forecasts of potential destructive activity.
During the 20th Century, several eruptions from Ruapehu drove iwi, such as Ngāti Rangi and Ngāti Hikairo to participate in emergency management and decision-making roles to keep communities safe. A new form tangata tiaki has emerged to create new processes of disaster risk reduction based on mātuaranga-a-iwi to ensure that iwi maintains an equitable role in decision making and encourages our young to solve problems using mātuaranga Māori, science, and technology.