Sunday, November 25, 2012

Indigenous Geographies

Recent exchange between members of the Indigenous Peoples Special Group of the Association of American Geographers (AAG) brings to light this brochure...

The IPSG works for five specific goals:
1) service to Indigenous communities;
2) service to the field of geography;
3) service to Indigenous geographers;
4) bridge the gap between Indigenous communities and geography/ers;
5) investigate what ethical research means in relationship to Indigenous communities and help guide researchers in conducting such research.

We, the IPSG, believe that Indigenous communities are highly
capable of determining their own research needs, and as researchers who work with
Indigenous communities, we see an important role for geographic tools, methods and
theory for facilitating such research.

I link to their site, or should that be our (I think I'm a member but can't recall paying any fees...)

Upcoming conference of the NZ Geographical Society in one of my home towns, Napier, in two weeks. I'm presenting some more of our earthquake's the abstract:

Indigenous responses to urban disaster: Maori mobility after the Canterbury earthquakes

Abstract: The recent earthquakes in Canterbury have highlighted ongoing response and recovery efforts by those people affected by the most significant urban disaster in New Zealand for 80 years. Many of those neighbourhoods badly affected by the initial quakes and extensive aftershocks have high proportions of Maori and Pasifika populations. This paper presents quantitative and qualitative data on the Maori response. While standard interpretations of Maori being ‘people of the land’ and agitating for land settlement remain valid, the tactics and strategies of those affected by the disaster involve significant mobility. Notwithstanding the cancellation of the 2011 census (due to the February 22nd quake), statistics on Maori are disappointingly sparse. However, Maori school enrolments reveal Maori children moving at rates three times those of Pakeha. Interviews conducted with Maori in the aftermath of the earthquakes further show their concern for their children, the use of whānau networks, and the willingness to migrate, including to Australia, as a response to urban disaster.

Keywords: Maori, urban disaster, cultural resilience.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Latest Maori unemployment figures dire...

Latest Household Labour Force Survey for the September quarter shows a rise in Aotearoa/NZ's unemployment to 7.3%.

The rise is reported as 'unexpected', a statement which merely highlights the empirical and methodological ignorance of current economics.

For Maori, we're back to the levels last seen in the worst of the GFC (Global Financial Crisis): 15.1%.

Considering how many of us have joined the exodus to Ahitereiria [jobless rate in Oz unchanged at 5.4%], this is a staggeringly bad result. Also, given the general confidence and excitement of this years FOMA conference, this result reinforces the two-speed Maori economy. A select and lucky few are doing very well; the great majority are not, and in fact seem to be in a downward spiral.

Expect the usual platitudes.

Simon Lambert

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