Māori organisation and contemporary Māori development : strengthening the conceptual plait : a thesis presented for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Māori Studies at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand
This thesis is primarily a study of organisational approaches used by Maori to achieve
their development goals and aspirations. One focus is the impact of development
ideas and practice, largely driven by international and national influence, upon Maori.
Another focus is the role of the state in the direction and implementation of Maori
development with particular emphasis on the impact of the structural adjustment
programme. As a consequence, the relationships between Maori and the state, Maori
and Maori, and Maori with others are critically examined.
The thesis canvasses a number of disciplines including Maori history, ecology,
sociology, anthropology, environmental studies, management, and development
studies. Engaging with this broad spectrum of ideas and actions and using literature
based, empirical and participatory research tools, three themes are explored. They are:
(i) The theme of 'development' which examines international and national
perspectives of development in order to identify the merits of Shifting the praxis of
(ii) The theme of 'organisation' which explores local and wider perspectives of
organisational theory and practice in order to identify the implications for Maori
(iii) The theme of 'relationship' which investigates a wide range of perspectives about
the dynamic relationships between Maori themselves and with others, and the
opportunities to reaffinn and build new relationships.
The thesis concludes with an analysis of current thought and action before presenting
five major conclusions. In essence and simply stated, if Maori self-determination is
the destination then the journey is best guided by a Maori centred approach to
development and organisational arrangements that are cognisant of the contemporary
circumstances, in particular the relationship dynamics, that challenge Maori and the
life choices they make.