Our mātauranga framework helps our decision makers understand, test and probe mātauranga when it is presented in evidence.
Mātauranga Māori is broadly defined as a body of knowledge, experience, values and philosophy of Māori (Mead 2016, Winiata 2001). it includes the unique knowledge and understanding Māori have of the taiao, the environment.
Our Mātauranga Framework was launched in July 2020 and since then we have transitioned the programme into the day-to-day mahi of the EPA.
The primary goals of our Mātauranga Framework are to:
- enable well-informed decision-making
- ensure we understand the issues and implications of mātauranga for our decision-making processes.
- increase the understanding of mātauranga across the EPA.
A waka hourua, or double-hulled canoe, symbolises our approach to mātauranga. The two hulls represent two knowledge systems – mātauranga and science – moving together in the same direction. The interwoven sails represent the information, evidence, advice, and risk assessment that inform our decisions.
While the Mātauranga Framework is a relatively new initiative, as a routine part of our work at the EPA, Ngā Kaihautū Tikanga Taiao, our Statutory Māori Advisory Committee, provides advice from a Māori perspective on a range of applications.
Kaupapa Kura Taiao, our Māori Policy and Operations Group, provides guidance to applicants about the importance of engaging with Māori. Alongside our business groups, it also raises awareness of the role of the EPA and on how Māori can participate in the decision-making processes of the EPA.
Te Herenga, our regionally-based network of kaitiaki and environmental resource managers, is also supported to come together and discuss important environmental issues.