News Archive 2022

NEWS: 2022

A home is a place of hope

Article by Jacqueline Paul.

A home is a place of hope. A home is a place of love. A home is a place of nurture. A home is a place of safety.

And yet, we live in a country where many rangatahi and their tamariki have no place to call home. So, it can be hard to imagine home as a place of hope when you have no home.

Our rangatahi research team recently released two research reports on rangatahi and housing. The first report, Youth homelessness in Tāmaki Makaurau in collaboration with Manaaki Rangatahi Youth Homelessness Collective, drew attention to youth homelessness with a particular focus on the growing number of rangatahi and tamariki experiencing the most severe housing deprivation in Aotearoa New Zealand.

The second report, A critical review of Rangatahi Māori and housing policy, highlights significant concerns about housing policy and the lack of support for many rangatahi Māori in desperate need of warm, safe, and secure housing. The report calls for investment into rangatahi Māori-led housing research and better housing policy for rangatahi Māori.

Tiana Kiro, left, and Beyonce Kahui, two young māmā who recently travelled to Wellington with E Tipu E Rea Whānau Services to share their thoughts on alcohol harm and the need for alcohol reform. Photo: Zoe Hawke, E Tipu E Rea Whānau Services.


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Wide-ranging new book revitalises understanding of home for Māori in the twenty-first century

Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua surveys the many ways whānau, hapū and iwi experience housing and home across Aotearoa New Zealand.

Arriving at a time of promise and change for Māori housing, these stories of home and belonging provide inspiration for the future. Over two dozen contributors from across the country also make this one of the most comprehensive accounts yet published of tangata whenua housing realities and aspirations.

Narratives of resilience open the book, showing how the broad currents of colonisation, social and economic history, and land and law changes have affected housing through time. Personal, heartfelt discussions of the relationships between housing, home and identity highlight contemporary challenges such as homelessness and rangatahi issues.

The concept of vertical papakāinga – high-rise, apartment-style accommodation – has been put forward as a way to meet the housing needs of Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei. While allowing for greater density, it requires careful navigation of aspects of tikanga and kawa, as whānau live above others’ heads (traditionally considered tapu). Image: Rau Hoskins.


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Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua: Māori housing realities and aspirations – chapter summaries

The Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua Kaupapa Māori Research Project draws on expertise from across the Māori housing sector. The project responds to the right and aspiration of Māori researchers, in collaboration with Māori organisations and communities, to develop Māori housing solutions. The outputs of the Kaupapa Māori Research Project include a collected volume of writing, entitled Kāinga Tahi, Kāinga Rua: Māori Housing Realities and Aspirations, published this month by Bridget Williams Books.

The volume includes the reflections and research of the late Moana Jackson, as well as a foreword by tuakana, Ella Henry, who shares insights she has gained from her housing research, her engagements with communities, and her time and mahi with whānau, hapū, and iwi.

A brief is available which introduces seven chapters from the volume – a teaser for the main event. A full list of the chapters and authors included in the volume is provided at the end of this brief.

The production of the book has been supported by Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, Creative New Zealand, and Bridget Williams Books.


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Reflections on kaumātua, pakeke and seniors’ housing: Building robust solutions with research

Launched on 2 November 2022 at the Moa Crescent Kaumātua village in Kirikiriroa (Hamilton), a new information resource to promote better housing for our ageing population presents BBHTC/Ageing Well research exploring why changes are needed to our housing system, looks at some imaginative opportunities, and shares the housing experiences and aspirations of kaumātua, pakeke (older people) and seniors.

Aotearoa New Zealand has an ageing population, people are living for longer and in better health than ever before. In 40 years there will be one million kaumātua, pakeke, and seniors who will be over the age of 65. Unless something is done to support this large group to better access housing and employment, our seniors, especially those living in urban environments, will find it increasingly difficult.

According to Age Concern New Zealand Chief Executive Karen Billings-Jensen, the way we age has altered significantly and this is placing more pressure on people over the age of 65 in accessing secure housing and employment.


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Rangatahi Māori demonstrate the value of transformational approaches to housing

A talented team of Māori researchers are working alongside communities to create a repository of knowledge and resources dedicated to ensuring housing security for rangatahi Māori.

Tātaiwhetu ki te Rangi, He Rangatahi ki te Kāinga is a four-year research project investigating pathways to safe, secure, and affordable homes for youth in Tāmaki Makaurau. It will also explore potential kāinga (housing) innovations designed to support Māori intergenerational housing aspirations.

Kō atu I te rima tekau ōrau o te hunga e noho kāinga kore ana ki Aotearoa nei kei raro iho i ngā tau 25.

E ai ki te rangahau kātahi ano kia whakarewahia I te pūrongo Youth Homelessness in Tāmaki Makaurau Aotearoa New Zealand ki te pā te hunga rangatahi ki te raru kāinga kore, he kūrakuraku te haere mōna ki te whai tautoko, he koretake rawa atu hoki ngā rauemi kua whakatahangia mā rātou.

From left, Jacqueline Paul, Maia Ratana, Pania Newton, and Hanna-Marie Monga. Photo: Tuputau Lelaulu

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Māori researchers shed light on severity of youth homelessness

Half of those experiencing homelessness in Aotearoa are under the age of 25 and new research has identified key contributing factors to the ongoing crisis.

Ngā Wai a Te Tūī, Unitec’s Kaupapa Māori and Indigenous Research Centre in collaboration with Manaaki Rangatahi ki Tāmaki Makaurau Youth Homelessness Collective have released a research report exposing a severe lack of reliable data, services, resources, and funding targeting youth homelessness.

Manaaki Rangatahi ki Tāmaki Makaurau Youth Homelessness Collective gives rangatahi experiencing homelessness a voice through providing advocacy support across social services and the housing system.

Lead Co-Ordinator of Manaaki Rangatahi Bianca Johanson says kaupapa and rangatahi Māori led research into homelessness is decades overdue.

Homelessness is catastrophic in any phase of life, but is especially difficult for young people. Symptomatic of a range of complex challenges, homelessness signals real deprivation, when the basic need for shelter cannot be met. Photo: Taufiq Klinkenborg.


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Huritanga: 10 years of transformative placemaking – outdoor public exhibition


When: 13 – 29 September 2022
Where: Cashel St Mall (between Oxford Tce & Colombo St), Christchurch

People of Ōtautahi – Christchurch and anyone visiting the area from 13 – 29 September 2022, Life in Vacant Spaces invites you along to celebrate this decade of 10 years of Life in Vacant Spaces (LiVS), come and have a stroll down Cashel St Mall and read all about LiVS over the years!

Funded by Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities, University of Canterbury, and Auckland University of Technology, the exhibition features work by Amanda Yates, Hannah Watkinson, Rachael Shiels, and Kelly Dombroski.

Lydia Hannah Thomas, Project Coordinator from Life in Vacant Spaces and Dr Reuben Woods (left), Director of Watch This Space getting the container ready. Photo: LiVS.


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Where do graduates go? It depends on their degree

A highly-educated population is a known key driver of local growth and prosperity, but one of the main challenges facing non-metropolitan regions is convincing highly educated young people to move into their area and then keeping them. In turn, losing the brightest from a community can lead to reduced business creation, innovation, growth, and community well-being in such regions.

Local decision-makers wish to attract and retain young qualified people, but what are the specific drivers that encourage graduates to settle in a particular place? What are the chances of students returning upon graduation? Is there potential to attract other graduates to the area?

Research by Building Better Thriving Regions researchers through Motu Economic and Public Policy Research has analysed the locations of choice of university and polytechnic students in New Zealand.

Recent BSc Graduates at Victoria University of Wellington’s capping parade in May 2022. Graduates from all fields of study other than agriculture are attracted to locate in places that have high overall quality of business, which tend to be the large cities. Photo: Louise Thomas.


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Building Better 22 eNewsletter out now

Issue 22 of the Building Better newsletter is out now, packed full of research news and views from Building Better researchers.

Articles include:

  • The recent release of the Social Impact Assessment Guide authored by Dr Nick Taylor and Dr Mike Mackay;
  • Te Puea marae continues to lead the way providing a transformational approach to transitional housing;
  • Respected Māori Architect Rau Hoskins speaks to Jack Tame from Q&A about making housing developments more culturally friendly;
  • …and much more.

A city council considered a programme of works to develop new cycle ways and improve public transport. They wanted to understand the social impacts of these proposals in order to decide on preferred routes and an appropriate level of investment in facilities. The SIA helped with the selection of options for the cycling and bus routes, and with their designs and best locations.


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BBHTC-supported wetland restoration project enters new phase

A wetland restoration project in Te Kaha is about to launch into an exciting phase with funding secured to build a predator-proof fence around the Te Kinakina wetlands. The project, led by Kathleen Morrison and Violet Aydon-Pou, is using mātauranga Māori as a core principle to restore the whenua to its natural state after decades of dairy farming under Crown management.

The Te Kinakina wetland restoration project is supported by the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge through the Poipoia Te Kākano Kia Puāwai research programme, led by BBHTC researchers Dr Fiona Cram and Dr Tepora Emery. The programme enables mātauranga Māori around housing and whenua, to allow Māori to blossom by nurturing research that is by, with, and for whānau, hapū, iwi, and Māori communities.

Read about the project in this Ōpōtiki News article.

Kathleen Morrison and Violet Aydon-Pou.


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Researchers combine identity and expertise to empower rangatahi in housing

A dedicated team of researchers are combining their identity and expertise to champion the intelligence and innovation of a generation in the housing sector.

Ngā Wai a Te Tūī, Unitec’s Kaupapa Māori and Indigenous Research Centre, has launched a research project that will investigate potential kāinga innovations to support intergenerational Māori housing aspirations. He tātai whetu ki te rangi, he rangatahi ki te kāinga project will investigate pathways to safe, secure, and affordable homes for rangatahi Māori in Tāmaki Makaurau.

The four-year research project, supported by BBHTC, is led and delivered by rangatahi for rangatahi. The project team includes Maia Ratana, Jacqueline Paul, Pania Newton, Hanna-Marie Monga, Grace Walker and is supported by Ngā Wai a Te Tūī Director Professor Jenny Lee-Morgan.


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Social Impact Assessment: Guidelines for thriving regions and communities

Regional communities are experiencing social impacts from economic regeneration projects, including tourism infrastructure development, heritage conservation, irrigation and new land uses, and housing, but how are these impacts measured?

Building Better researchers Dr Nick Taylor, from Nick Taylor and Associates, and Dr Mike Mackay, from AgResearch, have recently published a comprehensive practical guideline to Social Impact Assessment (SIA) to help councils and community groups learn the basics about how to conduct an SIA, contribute to an SIA, use the results of an SIA, and judge if an SIA is fit for purpose.

“During our work, we encountered many community leaders who were keen to learn how to assess the social impacts of the plans they design, how to take this information and use it to make decisions, and then, overtime, evaluate the outcomes for communities,” says Nick.


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Te Puea Marae hopes to transform approach to transitional housing

An article in Te Ao Māori News by Muriwai Hei examines the work at Te Puea Marae in delivering transitional housing.

With researchers supporting by Building Better (BBHTC), Manaaki Tangata E Rua is New Zealand’s first marae-based transitional housing programme. Whānau engaging with Te Puea are experiencing transformative results.

BBHTC researcher and Ngā Wai A Te Tūī director Professor Jenny Lee-Morgan says the evidence compiled identifies pivotal ways of thinking about marae and their ability to support communities.

“The contribution our marae provide in serving our whānau and addressing homelessness has seen compelling shifts for whānau in their physical and spiritual wellbeing.”

Families from diverse cultures who’ve experienced the meaningful support provided by Te Puea have shared their experiences with researchers.

Te Puea Marae.


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Te Puea Marae leads transformational approach to transitional housing

Te Puea Marae is transforming the lives of whānau experiencing homelessness with a tikanga Māori-based approach to transitional housing.

Manaaki Tangata E Rua, funded by Building Better Homes, Towns, and Cities (BBHTC), is New Zealand’s first marae-based transitional housing programme which has secured permanent homes for more than 100 families.

Lead Social Worker, Whitiao Paul says people supported through the programme become a part of the whanau at their Marae which helps creates an enduring connection.

“When they move to their new homes our relationship with them doesn’t end, we stay by their sides to help make sure they have the right support to maintain mana motuhake (self-sustainability).”

The Manaaki Tāngata Programme Kaimahi.


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Make housing developments more culturally friendly – architect

A leading Māori architect says new housing developments need to more culturally appropriate and designed with Māori and Pasifika families in mind.

Rau Hoskins told Q+A with Jack Tame that in the wake of the housing crisis, the initial effort has been to build, build, build.

“I think it’s to be applauded that the Government is finally putting major resourcing Into getting the volume of our state housing up. The next challenge is looking at the quality of those environments for Māori, Pacific and inter-generational whānau.”

However, he says the focus on multi-level terrace house developments has meant many houses don’t cater for whānau with disabled members, or allow for inter-generational living.

“We’ve had not only that style of house dictated to us, but we’ve had the planning dictated to us from standard plan books. And that was from the very early Māori Affairs houses right through to our medium density terraced housing that’s proliferating in Māngere and Mt Roskill and other parts of the country today,” said Hoskins.

Marae designed by Rau Hoskins.


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Kaupapakāinga: The potential for Māori cohousing

Māori conceptions of ‘home’ are relational and multi-dimensional. They can extend beyond the physical house, drawing on connections and relationships within and between whānau, whenua, and whakapapa.

These conceptions can be at odds with mainstream societal regimes, which tend to focus on individualisation, private property rights, and the nuclear family unit. Building Better researcher Dr James Berghan asks if there may be better options worth investigating.

“Much of our housing stock is reflective of those values which don’t necessarily align with a relational Māori world view. A growing body of literature is emerging on housing approaches that might better suit Māori needs and aspirations,” says James.

A number of scholars have explored various aspects of Māori and housing, including trends and contemporary barriers to Māori achieving their housing aspirations, papakāinga (Māori housing) design principles, and established toolkits to guide the development of papakāinga – advancing the state of knowledge around papakāinga and the potential for kaupapa Māori housing and neighbourhood design approaches.

Earthsong Eco-Neighbourhood, Ranui, Auckland. Photo: James Berghan.


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World’s top university awards scholarship to young Māori researcher

The world’s top-ranked university, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), has awarded Jacqueline Paul (Ngā Puhi, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Heretaunga, Ngāti Tūwharetoa) a full-ride scholarship.

The Ngā Wai A Te Tūī and He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata Whakamana Taiao (BBHTC) researcher has joined the chosen few accepted to MIT, ranked as one of the best universities in the world alongside institutes like Harvard, Oxford, and Stanford. For more than a decade, MIT has maintained the number one spot on the QS World University Rankings, and the competitive admissions process only accepts 4.1% or 4 out of every 100 applicants.

Jackie received the news of her acceptance to MIT just hours after graduating with her Masters at the University of Cambridge.

“I was in Lucy Cavendish College with a close friend and my sister when I received the news. It has taken me several weeks to process everything as it feels surreal to get into the one school I thought I would never get into. I feel so humbled and extremely grateful.”

MIT scholarship recipient Jacqueline (Jackie) Paul. Photo: Emma Wharepouri.


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Research experts – Co-governance integral to establishing equality for Māori

Leaders of a national research entity operating under a Treaty-based co-governance structure say it’s an important step towards establishing genuine equality for Māori.

Building Better Homes Towns and Cities (BBHTC), a National Science Challenge dedicated to exploring sustainable housing solutions, is led by Tangata Tiriti and Tangata Whenua co-chairs and co-directors who share equal authority and accountability.

BBHTC (Tangata Whenua) co-chair Gena Moses-Te Kani and (Tangata Tiriti) co-chair Hope Simonsen say political attacks on co-governance encourage ignorance and fuel racism.

“What it does is it reinforces racism. Saying that we are getting something that no one else is getting is throwing shots without understanding any of the detail whatsoever. It’s undermining and annoying,” says Moses-Te Kani.

Tangata Tiriti co-chair Hope Simonsen says co-governance supports the evolution of an imbalanced western-dominated system.

Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities: He Kāinga Whakamana Tangata, Whakamana Taiao National Science Challenge Co-directors Ruth Berry (left) and Rihi Te Nana. Photos: Louise Thomas (Ruth) and Desna Whaanga Schollum (Rihi).


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Co-governance a must for national research entity

Te Ao Māori News reporter Tumamao Harawira reported on the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge co-governance arrangements, with Tangata Tiriti and Tangata Whenua co-chairs and co-directors sharing equal authority and accountability for the Challenge.

BBHTC Tangata Tiriti co-chair Hope Simonsen says political attacks on co-governance encourage ignorance and fuel racism.

“It’s just absolutely ridiculous to think that we can work within the confines of a western structure and get good outcomes for Māori.”

Moses-Te Kani also says the journey towards co-governance is challenging.

“When I started in the challenge I was the only woman in governance, there were two Māori out of six. We didn’t have a kāhui and we purposely decided the kāhui wasn’t the way to go.”

With public consultation on co-governance expected to begin later this year following iwi and Māori consultation on He Puapua, BBHTC is encouraging organisations championing this approach to step forward and highlight the facts to help drown out divisive discourse.

Māori Television.


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Kaumātua get new homes at Bluff marae

Te Ao Māori News reporter Deborah LaHatte recently reported on the almost complete new block of Kaumātua housing in Bluff. The beginnings of this papakainga have long been an aspiration of the Te Rau Aroha Marae.

The project has in part been supported by government funding of $2 million as part of He Kāinga Pai Rawa, a Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge Project, which is developing housing strategies to create communities for Māori.

“We’re hoping to move the kaumatua in the next two months. For the next few weeks, we will be showing them around. There is still a lot of work to do but they are all excited,” says Te Runaka o Awarua kaiwhakahaere Dean Whaanga. Based in Bluff, Te Runaka o Awarua is an organisation responsible for implementing initiatives for social, cultural, and spiritual well-being of Ngāi Tahu and the community.

Dean says with a lot of runaka it’s a question of pūtea. “So we are always saving up money, but got the support of government.”

“There are housing issues all over the country and this helped us achieve some of our goals, especially for our kaumatua, as a starter. After that, we are looking at developing more papakainga housing for all of our hapū.”

The motu’s southern-most marae at Bluff has just opened six homes for kaumātua, fulfilling a 20-year dream by the Te Rau Aroha Marae whānau. Photo: Te Ao Māori News.


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Jetties and small settlement regeneration

New Building Better-funded research shows that jetties are deeply valued by people in a variety of ways from the recreational, to the historical, to the aesthetic. Jetties are places of connection, with intergenerational value. The researchers say that restoring a community’s jetty has a greater effect than just repairing the physical structure.

Recreational activities using jetties by the community were wide ranging including fishing, walking, nature appreciation, jumping off it, and using it to launch a kayak or boat.

In addition, many people interviewed for the research also emphasised that the jetties offered much more than their functional purposes. As an interviewee said, “I don’t think you have to use something for it to be precious.”

Jetties provide access to the marine environment to which many community members feel a connection and from which they get pleasure. Some utilise its access to nature for their wellbeing, with a respondent referring to their local jetty as the “Blue Hagley Park”.

The Church Bay jetty was successfully restored by the community by December 2016, after the Christchurch City Council made the decision in 2011 not to finance the jetty repair. The overall effect was of “bringing the community together”, with the grand re-opening occasion marked by a sign stating “We have saved our jetty”. The Kaioruru / Church Bay jetty was subsequently used as a blueprint for other community-led jetty restoration projects around the Peninsula. Photo: Kate Oranje, Lincoln University.


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Sustainable paving selected as ‘top venture’

A sustainable paving project sponsored by Venture Timaru, with support from AgResearch via the Thriving Regions programme of the Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities National Science Challenge, has recently been announced as one of the top 24 ventures in the 2022 Food, Fibre & Agritech Supernode Challenge.

The top 24 ventures have now been selected to move into an Accelerator programme. Participants are developing ideas that will solve problems in the sector, positively impacting the future of Aotearoa New Zealand as they support a cleaner and greener environment and facilitate more efficiency.

The paving project, part of Venture Timaru’s ‘Sustainable is Attainable’ initiative, is by University of Canterbury product design student Imogen McRae, and seeks to solve the problem of Timaru CBD’s slippery tiles, with replacements made from waste-materials from the food industry. The Accelerator programme could see the pavers eventually developed commercially, if they prove sustainable and fit-for-purpose.

Imogen has been developing pavers made of waste material sourced from South Canterbury – diatomaceous earth, a by-product from the beer brewing industry which normally winds up in the landfill, and polypropylene plastic, a waste product in many food processing and manufacturing businesses.

The Alps to Ocean pavement design concept was one liked by Timaru residents in Imogen’s survey. Photo: Imogen McRae.


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Building Better 21 eNewsletter out now

Issue 21 of the Building Better newsletter is out now, packed full of research news and views from Building Better researchers.

Articles include:

  • Te Tiriti-anchored housing strategies;
  • Ecology of community;
  • COVID-19 and media constructions of housing and home in Aotearoa New Zealand;
  • Non-slip, sustainable pavers could resolve Timaru’s slippery tile woes;
  • The great divide;
  • Christchurch Conversations: Towards 2030;
  • BBHTC wellbeing compass aids in Bill submission; and
  • Spotlight on housing; and
  • new publications.

The Government released MAIHI Ka Ora, the National Māori Housing strategy late last year. It envisages a future where “all whānau have safe, healthy, affordable homes with secure tenure, across the Māori housing continuum.” – it’s an ideal that should ultimately be extended to all New Zealanders, so why the particular focus on a Māori Housing strategy?


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BBHTC wellbeing compass aids in Bill submission

In late November, Te Tatau o Te Arawa, which represents Te Arawa whānui, made a submission on the Resource Management (Enabling Housing Supply and Other Matters) Amendment Bill.

In the submission Te Tatau called for the Bill to be wellbeing and urban regeneration-led to allow for wider positive effect. Te Tatau o Te Arawa is a research partner in Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities Urban Wellbeing – Ngā Kāinga Ora programme. In making the submission on the Bill they referred to the Te Tatau Mauri Ora Housing Development Wellbeing Compass co-created with AUT’s He Puna Ora Urban Regeneration Lab as part of the BBHTC Kāinga-Ora Urban Wellbeing programme. The compass tool is used to create a holistic social, cultural, and ecological wellbeing model for wellbeing-led urban planning and development.

Manahautū of Te Tatau, Jude Pani, says they would like to see that any changes to allowances for building densification be undergirded by mātauranga Māori and mauri ora (wellbeing of tangata and taiao).

“While we are notionally in support of the Bill, we want to see it done right. To Te Arawa whānui that means making sure that higher density developments have the inclusion of urban and peri-urban papakāinga and whenua Māori.

“Mauri ora – wellbeing – created by the built environment matters, and has been ignored for too long. The compass is a valuable tool to remind us of the different aspects of wellbeing we should be considering in building developments.”


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