Ao Māori: Mātauranga Māori

A guide to resources relating to the world of Māori including Treaty of Waitangi

Mātauranga Māori

Find on this page, resources supporting rangahau or Māori research including sources to find whakapapa, mōteatea, whakataukī and other traditional ways of knowing. 

"Mātauranga Māori is about a Māori way of being and engaging in the world – in its simplest form, it uses kawa (cultural practices) and tikanga (cultural principles) to critique, examine, analyse and understand the world. It is based on ancient values of the spiritual realm of Te Ao Mārama (the cosmic family of the natural world) and it is constantly evolving as Māori continue to make sense of their human existence within the world...

Mātauranga Māori provides insight into different perspectives about knowledge and knowing. The Māori epistemological penchant for trying to understand the connections and relationships between all things human and non-human first, ‘what is its whakapapa?’ provides a contrast to the western paradigm that tries to seek knowledge and understanding by a close and deep examination of something or someone in isolation first, ‘what does it/he/she do? What is it for?’ An initial question is, ‘who or what is this thing I am seeing in this world and how do I relate to it?’ Western knowledge’s initial question is, ‘what is the role that this person or thing has?’ In summary, the emphasis on the human element and the impact on the human element differentiates a Mātauranga Māori approach from a Western Pākehā approach.

Mātauranga Māori in our mahi is not just creating a space for Māori ways of being and knowing, but valuing the richness that these whakaaro (ideas) bring to our kaupapa (agenda). It is understanding that there is no ‘one’ way to ‘know’ something. It is also understanding that the strength in our mahi (work) comes from multiple world views and the acknowledgement that Mātauranga Māori can deepen and enhance other theories (e.g. critical theories)"

(Kia Eke Panuku (n.d.) Mātauranga Māori.)

Pae tukutuku - Websites for finding Māori information

Waiata / mōteatea (Songs and chants)

Rangahau - Māori and research

Examples of mātauranga Māori principles applied

Māori and intellectual property

Tikanga tuku iho - Māori concepts - Books

Moheni - Journals


Whakataukī / whakatauakī / Māori proverbs

Below are links to resources on whakataukī (proverbs of unknown source) and whakatauakī (proverbs if known source).(Elder, H. (2020) Aroha).

Pūrākau - Myth and Legend

Rangahau - Pūrongo - Articles

Broughton, D., Te Aitanga-a-Hauiti, T., Porou, N., McBreen, K., Waitaha, K. M., & Tahu, N. (2015). Mātauranga Māori, tino rangatiratanga and the future of New Zealand science. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand, 45(2), 83-88. doi:10.1080/03036758.2015.1011171 

Cunningham, C. (2000). A framework for addressing Māori knowledge in research, science and technology. Pacific Health Dialog, 7(1), 62-69. Retrieved from Pacific Health Dialog

Hikuroa, D. (2017). Mātauranga Māori—the ūkaipō of knowledge in New Zealand. Journal of the Royal Society of New Zealand, 47(1), 5-10. doi:10.1080/03036758.2016.1252407

Mahuika, R. (2008) Kaupapa Māori theory is critical and anti-colonial. Mai Review, 3(4), 1-16.

Moewaka Barnes, H., Henwood, W., Murray, J., Waiti, P., Pomare-Peita, M., Bercic, S., … Castleden, H. (2019). Noho Taiao: reclaiming Māori science with young people. Global Health Promotion, 26(3_suppl), 35–43.

Smith, L. (2000) Māori research development: Kaupapa Māori principles and practices. a literature review

Te Wāhanga, Hutchings, J., Potter, H., & Taupo, K. (2011). Kei tua o te pae hui proceedings : The challenges of kaupapa Māori research in the 21st century : Te Wananga o Raukawa, Pipitea Marae,Wellington, New Zealand, 5-6 May 2011. Paper presented at the Kei Tua o te Pae Hui. Retrieved from

Te Wananga-o-Raukawa, Mikaere, A., & Hutchings, J. (2012). Kei tua o te pae hui proceedings : Changing worlds, changing tikanga - educating history and the future : Te Wananga o Raukawa, Otaki, 4-5 September 2012. Paper presented at the Kei Tua o te Pae Hui. Retrieved from

Walker, S. (2006). An exploration of kaupapa Māori research, its principles, processes and applications. International Journal of Social Research Methodology, 9(4), 331-344. doi:10.1080/13645570600916049


Ako - Teaching and Learning - Articles