Budding Māori entrepreneurs from Otago University could see their business ideas come to life after an intensive training programme.
14 Māori students will begin the programme next week that develops kaupapa Māori entrepreneurship.
Business School Associate Dean of Māori Janine Kapa-Blair says the students will ultimately form a business concept which relates to themes of kai, technology and whānau.
She says as well as the best group taking $5,000.00, there is also an exciting opportunity to link them with a local tribe, Kati Huiraka.
Ms Kapa-Blair says the runaka is looking at business opportunities, and she has suggested it work with the students to explore a business opportunity or help start one up.
The course kicks off with a noho marae at Puketeraki on 24 November and ends on December 17.
A New Zealand-based Tongan chef says people from the Pacific should not feel that their food is not good enough for five-star dining.
Alex Kaihea recently appeared on the TV show Real Pasifik, alongside celebrity chef Robert Oliver, as part of efforts to develop awareness about the region’s food.
He’s told Pacific Beat the islands have excellent fresh ingredients and a long food tradition, but the big hotels and resorts have yet to catch on.
“All the head chefs are from Europe and when they come to New Zealand or Australia or even the Pacific, they tend to bring in their food and style,” he said.
“The junior chefs, the young islanders, they are still training and they undervalue their food or they don’t know any other way of using traditional food to make it look professional.”
Robert Oliver says the show has been an opportunity to showcase the diversity of Pacific cooking.
“For so long the Pacific had been tourism branded and there was a lack of differentiation between the islands and the cuisine story there, so it was all this kind of Pacific food blob,” he said.
“If you go from the Melanesian Islands all the way through the Polynesian, every single island has a distinct heritage and a distinct cuisine.”
He says says one of the benefits of traditional Pacific food is its healthiness.
“The original Pacific diet was so robust and full of known health properties and a lot of those values were pushed aside when the region was colonised,” he said.”So it’s about revisiting those food stories and bringing them back to the plate.”
Mr Kaihea says shows like Real Pasifik have been an avenue to showcase how to make Pacific cuisine presentable.
“Every island, we do the raw fish (and) fresh vegetables and we make the coconut cream from scratch because it’s much healthier that way,” he said.
“It’s a really, really good example of a Pacific Island dish – pretty much from Samoa, Rarotonga to Fiji (to) Tonga – but mainly what we do is we put it in a big bowl and it’s unattractive to people.
“But when we put it in a coconut shell, make it even and include cherry tomatoes…and make it presentable – that’s one of the dishes that represents Pacific Islanders.”
Mr Kaihea says some of the Pacific recipes can involve almost a whole day of cooking, but local chefs are learning new techniques for speeding that up.
“We’re still bringing in some of the techniques from what we know as a professional kitchen and try to make the island food presentable and the techniques for production,” he said.
“It’s finding international techniques for cooking, but you’re not getting away from the ingredients of the Pacific cuisine.”
Men are being urged not to be shy in applying for money from the Māori Women’s Development Incorporation.
The organisation offers low-cost loans to people starting up a business. But despite having a history of helping wāhine, incorporation chief executive Teresa Tepania-Ashton says she is welcoming applications from men.
Māori Women’s Development Incorporation is for Māori women and their whānau, which means they also offer their services to men as well, she says.
Auckland audiences will have a rare opportunity to join master musicians Dr Richard Nunns and James Webster for a two-day workshop exploring taonga puoro – traditional Māori instruments – on Monday 4th and Tuesday 5th November at Unitec’s Te Noho Kotahitanga Marae.
This will be the first public workshop of its kind that Dr Nunns has held in Auckland where he will be joined by fellow musical collaborator James Webster, who has an extensive knowledge of taonga puoro and the tradition Māori arts, including whakairo rākau (carving) and tā moko (tattooing).
Dr Nunns is regarded as the world’s foremost authority on taonga puoro. He recently performed at Ted X Auckland and has received numerous awards including an honorary doctorate of music from Victoria University in 2008, the QSM for services to Taonga Puoro in 2009, and an Arts Laureate in the same year.
He and fellow musician the late Hirini Melbourne were inducted into the New Zealand Music Hall of Fame in 2009 and awarded joint recipients of the Lifetime Contribution to Māori Music Award in 2012.
Athina Tsoulis, Deputy Executive Dean for the Faculty of Creative Industries and Business at Unitec says they are delighted to be hosting this rare workshop.
“Richard Nunns has contributed so much knowledge and inspired so many in the art of Māori tradition instruments and music,” says Tsoulis.
“Unbelievably Dr Nunns has never held an interactive workshop of this type before in Auckland,” she says, “so it’s absolutely a unique opportunity for the local community and Māori music enthusiasts to come along and be enriched by the wisdom, expertise and hands-on guidance shared by these two remarkable masters of taonga puoro.”
Workshop participants will make and play a range of Māori instruments used to mimic birdcry and the sounds of the natural environment. Bookings are essential as only 30 places are available. For further details, visit our website.
It can be tough to talk about the future; sometimes it seems like there are so many unknowns.
Just think about how much the world has changed since the introduction of New Zealand Superannuation (NZS) in 1977 creating a universal – and not means-tested – scheme that paid 80 per cent of the average wage to married people over 60.
During the ensuing years, adjustments have been made to the scheme which in itself was the latest incarnation of much older systems. This shows we can be flexible when we need to be – and right now, with a population which is living and working longer, we need to talk about superannuation.
It’s time for an honest and frank discussion about how NZS might need to change to reflect these changing circumstances and lifestyles because the current arrangement of eligibility for NZS at 65 may not suit everybody’s needs.
Earlier this year, United Future leader Peter Dunne released a Government Discussion Paper on a Flexi-Super plan and New Zealanders have just a few more weeks left until the Friday, 11 October deadline to comment on the proposal.
Flexi-Super gives New Zealanders the option of choosing to take a reduced rate of NZS from the age of 60 or an increased rate if they delay taking up superannuation until they reach 70.
“The basic motivation for this policy is giving people more choice because New Zealanders want choice about how they live their lives,” Mr Dunne says. “At the moment, they have no option but to carry on working until they’re 65 or leave and make do.”
Under Mr Dunne’s Flexi-Super plan, the standard age of eligibility for the state pension remains at 65 and payments stay at two-thirds of the average after-tax weekly wage for those who take their super then. But the earlier someone decides to first take NZS, the lower the payment will be each year relative to the rate they would have received had they decided to first collect NZS at 65; alternatively, taking NZS after age 65 means receiving a higher relative rate.
These rates will be adjusted for inflation and wage increases, so the mechanism for adjusting rates of NZS does not change. It will remain possible to continue working and receive NZS – and that could offer greater flexibility to those in physically demanding jobs.
The paper points out that there are advantages and disadvantages in allowing such flexibility.
Advantages include making the system fairer for workers in tough, physical jobs and those, such as M?ori and Pasifika, who have a lower life expectancy. It also avoids the possible stigma associated with seeking benefits among those who, for a variety of reasons, can no longer work. It may also enable some people to pay down debt or build up assets.
Giving people the option to wait till they are 70 before drawing down NZS will encourage older workers to stay in the labour force for longer, helping to retain much-needed skills, experience and institutional knowledge.
There is a risk that Flexi-Super may reduce incentives for the 60 – 64 year olds to work and if NZS is taken too early, it could create hardship for many who retire early. It is vital for us all to understand that the reduced rate we accept in return for being paid earlier would be the rate received for life.
The State might end up having to supplement the incomes of people who retire early, then find themselves unable to make ends meet because of an unforeseen change in circumstances.
A layered system could also seriously complicate what is at present an easily understood and administered system. Government actuaries will face a Herculean task to figure out a sliding scale that takes all the required factors into account and delivers a system that is cost-neutral, as is proposed.
“This is part of a wider conversation about financial literacy that we all have to have and I encourage all New Zealanders to think about these issues and discuss them in the course of daily life,” Mr Dunne says.
According to a Fairfax Media-Ipsos poll in February, 49 per cent of people want to choose when they receive their state pension, with reduced or enhanced rates depending on the age they start drawing payments.
So we need to consider carefully Flexi-Super and the Government wants to hear your views. The Discussion Paper can be viewed at www.unitedfuture.org.nz and also on the Minister of Finance’s website.
Submissions can be made by email to email@example.com or posted to Flexible Superannuation, The Treasury, PO Box 3724, Wellington 6140, New Zealand. Following this consultation, the Government will consider whether to further explore the Flexi-Super proposal. More detailed policy work and more consultation will take place before any decisions are made.
How will Māori land be more productive by 2025? That was the question aired in a Fieldays seminar hosted by Ben Dalton of the Ministry of Primary Industries.
A panel of experts and entrepreneurs sat in to field the questions raised by Dalton, as well as questions from the plain-speaking floor.
The Māori economy is arguably the sleeping giant of our rural economy, and it’s in all our interests that we wake it up, such will be the likely trickle-down effects throughout the entire country.
It’s estimated that 40 per cent of fishing quotas are controlled by Māori; 43 per cent of forestry grown in this country is on Māori land, while 25 per cent of our beef and lamb is farmed on Māori land.
The stats are impressive but the potential is nonetheless gigantic. There are currently an estimated 960,000 hectares of freehold Māori land with the potential to be converted to efficient dairy, beef or sheep farming operations.
Then there are the more peripheral stretches where forestry and mānuka honey, for example, can bring in further millions.
Unlike a generation ago, the foremost issue with Māori agribusiness is not how to acquire the resources but how to develop those resources, many of which are underperforming.
A further, long-term issue involves pushing Māori agribusiness further up the value chain.
Miraka and the mānuka honey industry innovations are strong examples on how to do just that, though they sadly serve, at present, as laudable exceptions rather than the rule.
Again, a comprehensive, third-level education – the growing bane threatening so much of our agribusiness in the decade to come – will be key to steering us where we truly want to go as a collective rural economy, and not just where we happen to end up.
The panel also urged the necessity for Māori hapū and iwi to work together first and foremost, but through a process of aggregation rather than amalgamation. If this is achieved, it opens up wider vistas for inter-iwi trade.
Undoubtedly, there are a range of strong and diverse views within Māoridom that have to be first fielded and addressed within, and this is not always an easy or quick task. Once that is achieved, they can aim to interface with wider industry groups and, in turn, international markets.
Because most Māori farm land will not, in general, be sold, there is obviously little impetus to farm for capital gain.
In real terms, that means Māori must farm in an even more innovative and productive manner than the wider industry: because of that very same succession-basis, they must pass on the land to the next generation in even better condition, so caring for the land is sacrosanct.
This balancing act would challenge the very finest farmers in this country, be they Ngāti Pākehā or Māori, and there is no quick fix.
There is also, apparently, the need to inspire those in Māori farming to have higher aspirations, while keeping in mind economies of scale. This means working smarter and using a strategic, long-term vision that can be applied on the day-to-day level.
A strong emphasis needs, of course, to be put on the need to develop leadership, governance and a competent, qualified skill-base, and achieving that may come down more to changes of attitude at home, school and work rather than changes of legislation in Wellington.
In short: it’s in our hands.
The panel included Traci Houpapa (Chair of Federation of Maori Authorities), Hemi Rau (Otakawiwi Topu), Jamie Tuuta (CEO Maori Trustee), Kingi Smiler (Chairman of Miraka) and Hinerangi Raumati (Chair of Parininihi ki Waitotara).
A young Māori conservationist says its essential tangata whenua are involved in programmes to manage natural resources.
TK Hawaikirangi from Ngāti Kahungunu is a recent graduate of DOC’s Tauira Kaitiaki Taiao cadetship programme.
He spoke to last month’s World Indigenous Network in Darwin on the Ngā Whenua Rāhui programme, which allows Māori land with high conservation values to be managed as part of the conservation estate.
He says environmental protection is a growth industry, and treaty settlements means more skilled Māori will be needed to manage conservation land returned to iwi.
You thought Gollum looked unrealistic, or you could do more convincing blue aliens than in Avatar?
If so, you might be just the one who Weta Digital and Victoria University are looking for.
The two have paired up to announce a computer graphics PhD scholarship that will put the winner right at the cutting edge of movie special-effects magic.
“The successful candidate will have the ability to go deep and solve a problem fundamentally,” Weta Digital chief technology officer Sebastian Sylwan said.
He expected fierce competition for the scholarship – whoever wins will have their PhD fees covered for three years and be awarded an annual $25,000 stipend with the distinct likelihood of a job at the Oscar-winning effects studio behind the Lord of the Rings trilogy, King Kong and The Adventures of Tintin.
Whoever takes the coveted spot will enter the rarefied world of Weta Digital research to explore mysterious gaming and movie special-effects disciplines such as numerical simulation, computer vision, rendering and the mashing of data structures.
Mr Sylwan, who was head of research and development on Avatar, said that, although it might seem as if movie effects had become as lifelike as possible, computer graphics were far from “hitting the ceiling”.
With film directors demanding increasingly realistic and complex effects, there were still two major problems in the sphere of computer-generated make-believe.
“Rendering humans is still a problem, from the peach fuzz on the face to the fibres in clothes. Simulation is still a problem too: for example, a vast ocean moving still takes massive computational power.”
The scholarship will be part of Victoria University and Weta Digital’s computer graphics programme, which was started in 2011 and now has about 80 undergraduate students.
The postgraduate scholarship is being touted as a way of enriching the “eco-system” around Weta Digital, academia and the capital’s entertainment and digital industries. “We want to help grow that eco-system in Wellington and New Zealand,” Mr Sylwan said.
University computer graphics associate professor John Lewis said the scholarship would help forge stronger ties between academics and movie industry research.
The 2013 APAC Forum provides participants with practical examples and tools to help healthcare providers, nations, organisations, teams and individuals, maintain and improve the quality of care to patients, in the face of both a shrinking funding base and growing demand for services.
In addition to a fantastic programme, the forum includes ample networking opportunities for you to meet with some of the world’s leading authorities on quality improvement in healthcare.
Don’t miss this unique dynamic and inspiring event.
Places are limited so to reserve your place today by registering here.
Proudly sponsored by Ko Awatea Health System Innovation and Improvement, Counties Manukau Health and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
When I received the call from CEO, Beatrice Faumuinā ONZM around 10 months ago, I was honoured and delighted to be asked to mentor a future Pasifika leader.
Having given this wonderful offer consideration, I jumped at the chance to be part of the mentoring team for the Inaugural Cohort of 2011 for the Best Leadership Academy.
At that time, Ms Faumuinā wrote ‘I am incredibly thankful to the support from corporate companies, philanthropic and our Pasifika communities who share BEST Leadership Programme’s vision and purpose. Together we will help increase the incomes for Pasifika communities; provide role models for our Pasifika people and help more businesses and organisations contribute to the economic development of New Zealand’. She also said this will enable the inaugural participants the opportunity to progress into senior leadership positions, or start their own entrepreneurial business to generate wealth for their families and for Aotearoa / New Zealand.
I too was proud to be part of an association who will ‘help build a pipeline to increase the number of Pasifika people in leadership positions within businesses.’
The mentoring team went through a training session at the University of Auckland’s Owen G Glenn’s Business School in July last year, guided by the experienced hands of Roseann Gedye. This session was vital to allow us to understand the role, purpose, and responsibilities of our mentoring relationships. Roseann provided great insights and shared her wisdom, knowledge and experience willingly, as did Beatrice. This session then set we mentors, on the path for our part of the journey with the Inaugural Cohort.
Fast forward to the end of August, when we all got to met. I was nervous, excited and slightly intimidated when I met my mentee, former Silver Fern Vilimaina Davu. She’s a giant of a woman, with a beautiful soul and a heart sized to match her height. We hit it off immediately and I hope that our relationship will continue for many years to come. We were paired together due to my recruitment experience, and her current role at Coverstaff (recruitment).
So over a 6 month period, we toiled away at weekly mentoring sessions, from which we both came away with something. Vili has since gained a promotion during our “time together”, and whist I wish I could take the credit (sic), it’s all down to her – her great skills and experience.
So tonight, we will celebrate the Inaugural Cohort of 2011 and their significant contribution and achievements in the BEST Leadership Programme. I warmly congratulate the following graduands for their hard work and perseverance through a challenging and rewarding 18-month programme:
Afiafi Leala – Bank Manager, Westpac, Emma Sullivan – Operations Co-ordinator, University of Auckland Business School, Eroni Clarke –Tupu services, Waitemata District Health Board, Francina Gataua– Tertiary manager, Manukau, BEST Pacific Institute of Education, Malia Apikotoa – Northern sales manager for State Insurance, Marina Masame – Youth Academy Manager, BEST Pacific Institute of Education, Moe Alefaio – Accounts Assistant, Te Whanau o Waipareira Trust, Patrick Foster – Team Leader, Just Water International, Talei Mattner – Sales manager, Telstra Clear Pacific Events Centre, Tavalea Feagaiga – Operations manager, Skycity, Vilimaina Davu – Consultant, Coverstaff and Vita Sa Fia – Security Team Manager, Skycity.
Your communities are going to continue to prosper under your guidance and I wish you every success with your future journeys.
If you’re interested in becoming a participant of this year’s cohort, or mentoring, click here.