Our Pou/Supporting Architecture

Maori Meeting House With Traditional Carved Interior, The National Marae At The Waitangi Treaty Grounds In New Zealand

Our Pou are investments that span across research programmes because they aim to add value to everything we do. They involve groups of passionate researchers who have identified gaps in the system that won’t be filled by a traditional research programme model, but are vital to the success of the mahi (work).

Science Excellence and Impact

BioHeritage made an early commitment to co-design research with our Treaty and industry partners, endusers and communities, to maximise the impact and uptake of research outcomes. Co-design is challenging to execute and in this Pou we are working to document, publish and share the learnings gained from our approach to mission-led science. It is important to document and share the advantages, challenges and unintended consequences of our values-led approach, to allow the broader scientific community and funders of science to learn from our experiences.

Within the Science Excellence and Impact Pou, a research team has been tasked with quantifying the effect of BioHeritage's approach on traditional science metrics, such as publications, and identify other (new) metrics that may better describe science excellence and impact. Te Aho Mātauranga, the Māori leadership rōpu, is also working to define and share measures of excellence and impact that are more meaningful and relevant to Māori researchers and communities.

Finally, we are working to collate and share the many diverse impacts our research has had on biodiversity and society in Aotearoa.

Pou Lead:
Maureen O'Callaghan (AgResearch)


Te Aho Mātauranga

Māori have strong connections to Aotearoa New Zealand's environment, with valuable inter-generational views and belief systems that can underpin decision-making, governance and stewardship.

BioHeritage work has been led by Te Tiriti o Waitangi for some time, which has placed us in a strong position to step up to a new level of commitment and respectful partnership at all levels of the Challenge. By forming Te Aho Mātauranga, our Māori leadership rōpu (group), we have accelerated our work in this space and hope to demonstrate leadership in the wider Aotearoa innovation system.

Pou Lead:
Erina Watene (Waikato-Tainui, Ngāti Maniapoto, Ngāi Te Rangi; independent researcher)


Crazy & Ambitious Think Tank

The BioHeritage National Science Challenge has been funded for 10 years, but reversing the decline of our biological heritage will take much, much longer than this. The goal of the Crazy & Ambitious Think Tank is to stimulate new ideas, approaches or syntheses that are needed to improve our biological heritage over the longer-term.

This ‘horizon’ work will complement the shorter-term research being conducted within our main programmes by re-imagining how we, as a nation, could take a better-informed approach than what is currently provided by various national strategies or operational efforts in ‘isolation’.

Their activities also provide a way of integrating work streams on biodiversity and biosecurity, and will support early career and Māori thinkers.

Pou Lead: Aroha Mead (Ngāti Awa, Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Tūwharetoa, Tuhourangi, Ngāi Tūhoe; independent researcher) and Jason Tylianakis (University of Canterbury)

Ngā Pī Ka Rere

The future of our science system, and our country, depends on those who come after us. That’s why BioHeritage is investing in the next generation.

Ngā Pī Ka Rere early careers network was established in 2019 to ensure our early career professionals have all the support they need to flourish in their chosen careers. The group intentionally don’t use the common term ‘early career researchers’ to recognise diverse career pathways within the science system. They want to enable those starting, or restarting, their careers to not feel restricted to traditional research pathways.

Pou Leads:
Aisling Rayne (Cawthron Institute)
Symon Palmer (Ngāi Te Rangi; Te Herenga Waka – University of Wellington)
Helen Warburton (University of Canterbury)

Te Whakahononga

Nested within Ngā Rākau Taketake, Te Whakahononga is coordinating a multi-disciplinary response, connecting people who have mātauranga Māori skills and unique localised knowledge with other NRT scientists across 15 areas impacted by KDB and/or MR. With 12 different mana whenua groups coming on board, this is an unprecedented level of community/hapū participation for BioHeritage.

Leading Māori social scientist, Karen Fisher, of Waikato‐Tainui (Ngāti Mahuta) and Ngāti Maniapoto (Ngāti Paretekawa) descent, is based at the University of Auckland and is part of the team to assist in recording, synthesising and sharing knowledge from this ground-breaking approach.

The Te Whakahononga approach recognises that mana whenua kaitiaki and tohunga are best placed to co-design and co-develop our next steps towards controlling the threat presented by KDB and MR, and returning our ngahere and crops to vitality.

Pou Leads:
Waitangi Wood (Ngatirua, Ngāti Awa, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāpuhi Nui Tonu; independent contractor)
Juliane Chetham (Patuharakeke, Ngātiwai, Ngāpuhi; Chetham Consulting Ltd.)
Dave Milner (Ngāti Wai, Ngāti Whatua, Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Porou; Kāhu Environmental Ltd.)
Alby Marsh (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngai Te Rangi, Ngā Puhi, Ngāti Hine, Te Rarawa; Plant & Food Research)

Related research

Data Set

An early career perspective on encouraging collaborative and interdisciplinary research in ecology

There is a growing need for collaborative and interdisciplinary research in addressing global ecological challenges, and early career researchers (ECRs) often play a vital role…
View Data Set

Enjoying our content?

Subscribe to our monthly Newsletter

Scroll to Top