Sunday, May 31, 2015

Changes afoot at FOMA...

The Federation of Maori Authorities (FOMA) is pledging to restore is financial health and look to 'key members' to support a three-year development programme and by paying more to the organisation it its goal of supporting Maori economic development.

FOMA Chair Traci Houpapa, said that unforseen legal costs of $200,000 through challenging the Crown Forest Rental Trust appointment process and the Ture Whenua Maori review, 'while both were important cases' were 'unplanned and not budgeted for'. This has hit the organisation's cash-flow.

I was at last year's AGM in my hometown of Whanganui and was struck by the low turnout - much lower than the Taupo AGM of a few years ago - and the decline in membership fees (i.e., less members).

I recall government (and FOMA) being highly critical of the Maori Council at the time [synopsis of the case here], mainly - it seems - because of the expense of court action.

As Te Kooti said:

... Ma Ta ture ano te ture e aki,” 

 Only the law can be pitted against the law...

Thursday, May 07, 2015

Nga Pae o te Maramatanga refunded...

This just out from Joyce...

"Four more Centres of Research Excellence (CoREs) have been selected by the Tertiary Education Commission at the end of the second round of CoREs funding.

Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Steven Joyce has commended successful applicants, the Bio-Protection Research Centre (Lincoln University), The Riddet Institute (Massey University), QuakeCore: Centre for Earthquake Resilience (University of Canterbury) and Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga (The University of Auckland.)

The successful CoREs will focus on sustainable pest management solutions, food science and human health, earthquake disaster resilience, and Māori research. All CoREs will contribute to the economic and social wellbeing of New Zealand.

The announcement means the number of cross-institutional centres of research excellence around the country will increase from six to 10. All 10 will receive five years of funding from 2016 to 2020. 

“CoREs provide an excellent collaborative environment for the delivery of world-leading, innovative and strategically focused research. The work of all 10 CoREs will deliver benefits to New Zealand across economic, environmental and social platforms that will make a difference to the lives of all New Zealanders,” says Mr Joyce.

The announcement today follows a comprehensive selection process managed by the Royal Society of New Zealand and the Tertiary Education Commission.

All 21 unsuccessful applicants from the 2013/14 selection round of funding had the opportunity to re-submit a new application for the remaining CoREs places. Applicants had the opportunity to strengthen their proposals between the selection rounds. 

Three of the four CoREs selected today are previous CoREs who were not successful in the first round of funding last year, while QuakeCore is a brand new research centre.

Those selected include a revamped Maori Research CoRE Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga based at the University of Auckland. “The Government dedicated specific funding for a Maori Research CoRE. Of the three applicants for the Maori CoRE, the new revised Ngā Pae o to Māramatanga proposal stood out for the quality and coverage of its research programme.

CoREs have been operating in New Zealand since 2002. In that time the Government has provided over $434.5 million in funding to current and previous CoREs.

The four CoREs announced today are in addition to the six CoREs that were successful in the 2013/14 funding round. Of the 10 CoREs that will be funded, five are existing CoREs and five will be receiving CoREs funding for the first time."

Lincoln University will do very well out of this, with Dr. Jamie Ataria a Deputy Co-Chair (along with Associate Professor Jacinta Ruru at the University of Otago, and the Bioprotection Research Centre having Melanie Mark-Shadbolt managing a number of Maori research associates.
Simon Lambert

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