The journey to embrace Te Ao Māori into the engineering profession is well underway. Meet Papaki Parihau, the Māori Advisory Rōpū guiding us through the Kimihia Rangahaua workplan.

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Papaki Parihau group and Te Ao Rangahau staff

Earlier this year, Kimihia Rangahaua – Te Ao Rangahau Engineering New Zealand’s strategy to embed Te Ao Māori into engineering – was shared with the profession.

Engineers were encouraged to strive for a profession where Māori can thrive, stories of Māori engineering are recognised and celebrated and where te reo Māori is promoted and used.

The strategy’s release came on the back of kanohi ki te kanohi hui held throughout the motu and online in 2023, which gave engineers with whakapapa Māori the opportunity to provide their perspectives. The kōreroreo shared played a pivotal role in shaping Kimihia Rangahaua.

This year, the mahi continues with implementation of the workplan, which sets out actions to achieve over the next three years.

“At the hui, engineers shared with us the importance of uplifting Māori, supporting connections and valuing mātauranga Māori in engineering practice,” said Richard Templer, Chief Executive, Engineering New Zealand Te Ao Rangahau.

“To tautoko these ambitions over the coming year, Māori engineers will have the opportunity to attend a national huihuinga – developed and delivered with their specific needs in mind.

“Work is also underway to support and advise on drafting guidance updates to incorporate cultural competency – reinforcing our commitment that an understanding of Te Tiriti and mātauranga Māori is a core skill for chartership assessments,” said Templer.

To support Kimihia Rangahaua within the organisation, there’s a strong focus on increasing the cultural competency of Te Ao Rangahau staff and celebrating the achievements of Māori engineers, past and present.

Papaki Parihau – Māori Advisory Rōpū

At the forefront of Kimihia Rangahaua is our Māori Advisory Rōpū – Papaki Parihau.

Since late 2020, Chantelle Bailey (Te Rarawa, Ngāpuhi), Lincoln Timoteo (Ngāti Raukawa), Warner Cowin (Ngāti Porou) and Troy Brockbank (Te Rarawa, Ngāti Hine, Ngāpuhi, Ngātiwai, Ngāti Kahu) have been committed to challenging Te Ao Rangahau to do more for Māori and breathe life into the mahi it sets out to achieve.

In April 2024, a special hui took place – where the organisation said haere rā and ngā mihi maioha to Bub Konia, who retired from Te Ao Rangahau after 28 years. Since the group’s inception, Bub was its kaumātua – and her wisdom and guidance will be greatly missed.

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Warner Cowin and Lincoln Timoteo being presented with lei as part of their farewell from Papaki Parihau

Inaugural members Warner Cowin and Lincoln Timoteo were also farewelled – with Te Ao Rangahau and Papaki Parihau acknowledging the time, insight and support they’ve given Kimihia Rangahaua over the past 2-3 years. At the hui, a mihi whakatau was held to welcome two new members – Deena Tapara (Ngāti Maniapoto, Tūwharetoa, Te Ati Haunui-a-Pāpārangi) of Stellar Projects and Byron Konia (Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāti Porou) of Stantec.

“The support, guidance and advice from Papaki Parihau has been integral to our journey. I’m really looking forward to Deena’s and Byron’s contribution and delighted that Chantelle and Troy will remain with Papaki Parihau,” said Templer.

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Deena Tapara giving her mihi and pepeha to Papaki Parihau

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Byron Konia giving his mihi and pepeha to Papaki Parihau

“With the involvement of Papaki Parihau and Māori engineers, the profession is well set up to celebrate and uplift Māori engineers and engineering – and in doing so, support greater inclusiveness and connection.”

Meet all the members of Papaki Parihau