Ethnographic analysis of Māori and Pasifika communities and their associations with the Myrtaceae (Myrtle) plant family
Bioprotection Aotearoa
Lincoln, Canterbury
2d ago

Location : Wellington or Canterbury

Institution : Wellington or Canterbury based Universities

Supervisors : Aroha Mead, Amanda Black, Nick Roskruge, Nick Waipara

Discipline : Indigenous knowledge

Deadline : 17th December 2021

About the Project

We offering an M.Sc Scholarship opportunity, funded by a New Zealand Tertiary Education Commission grant to Bioprotection Aotearoa.


Bioprotection Aotearoa is a national Centre of Research Excellence that exists to train the next generation of bioprotection researchers and to deliver world-class research that protects the productive and natural landscapes of Aotearoa New Zealand.

Our mission is to educate our nation’s future bioprotection leaders by collaborating to conduct pioneering, multi-disciplinary research that addresses the environmental challenges Aotearoa New Zealand is facing.

We draw on our collective academic strengths to develop new and innovative solutions that protect our productive and natural landscapes from climate change, pathogens, pests and weeds.

Our kaupapa is guided by a unique mātauranga Māori and science framework Te Taiao-a-rangi which supports a holistic, systems-level approach to achieving intergenerational environmental sustainability.

This M.Sc is funded by, and sits within, the Bioprotection Aotearoa science programme. Besides their own research, the successful applicant will attend courses and workshops in relevant transferable skills such as scientific writing and project management as well as participate in the biennial Bioprotection Aotearoa Conference, regular seminar series and group meetings.

Research description

This project requires the compilation and examination of a dossier of references and quotes on customary cultural associations of Māori (whanau, hapū, Iwi) with mānuka (Leptospermum scoparium), and Pasifika communities with related tea tree species (Leptospermum spp.

This will feed into broader research that will contribute to Indigenous commercial management and conservation of this family of plant species.

This will require searching beyond scientific literature to also exploring archival materials (NZ Archives) and taxonomic collections (Te Papa and Alan Herbarium and others).

Ideally the candidate will be situated in Wellington so they can visit Archives NZ and if required Te Papa although much of the work can be conducted through database searches and semi-structured interviews with key participants in mānuka and tea tree conservation and management.

Prerequisites and Application Process :

Applicants for this project are expected to have worked with Māori communities and have qualifications and experience in semi quantitative and qualitative research.

Applications should send evidence of qualifications and research experience, together with a Curriculum Vitae and contact details of two academic referees.

Applications should be supported by a cover letter that states why the candidate is interested in the M.Sc Scholarship and how their qualifications and aspirations would map onto the proposed research.

The position is open to candidates with a B.A, B.Sc or B.A or B.Sc Honours in a relevant discipline.

Preferred candidates would then need to apply to study for an M.Sc at one of our Partner University Institutes (Lincoln, Canterbury, Victoria, Massey) and meet the institutional criteria for entry prior to the scholarship being confirmed, including obtaining a visa where applicable.


The two year (24 month) M.Sc. Scholarship provides an annual tax-free stipend of NZ$18,000, covers full university tuition fees.

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