The group hailing from the top universities and hospitals in the United States will be in Rotorua in May. It is a reciprocal visit following Dr Ihirangi Heke and Te Papa Tākaro CEO visiting their research centres and conferences in their home countries.
Chief executive of Te Papa Tākaro, Paora Te Hurihanganui said they had met with these experts previously and again last year to see what support, ideas there were and how that aligned with Māori thinking.
The visit I went on last year was the second visit to reconnect again and visit some of the progress and where to in the future. On that last visit, we invited them to come and have a look and we invited them as a collective and bring some of their indigenous researchers as well,” he said.
“This is a continuation of the relationship building between Te Papa Tākaro and these professors. We’re taking an opportunity to present some of our ideas and they will stay on the marae and show them some cultural stuff as well as some of the systems we use at Te Papa Tākaro to engage with Māori.”
Mr Te Hurihanganui said they hoped to have an open session at Ihenga, Toi Ohomai and invite those in the health sector who would like to hear them speak.
“To get these five offshore professors and two New Zealand ones who are pretty high up - you’ll never get there anywhere else,” he said.
“[For Te Papa Tākaro o Te Arawa] we really want to get some of their offshore thinking on global obesity and indigenous obesity and we want to showcase our potential. Papa Tākaro has moved back to ancestral profiling. Using ancestors and profiling ancestors and bringing it down to the particular individual or group so they realise their potential within that space as well.
“We see this not just for Papa Tākaro but for our kids, so that in the future there’s some relationships that are going on and send our Rangatahi to places like Hawaii where they already have a platform they can come from,” he said.
“Ancestral information is accepted in the sector and we can start sharing our knowledge and information in a more appropriate way rather than us being researched on. We are active participants in research and we’re actually leading that research.”
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