A leading Māori educator and an academic of international standing, Dr Roger Maaka has been appointed EIT’s first emeritus professor.
The honour recognises Professor Maaka’s distinguished service as a research professor and former dean of EIT’s faculty of Māori studies, Te Ūranga Waka.
Of Ngāti Kahungunu descent from Takapau, he attended Central Hawke’s Bay College before launching into a 20-year career in the New Zealand Army, which included tours of duty in Borneo, South Vietnam and Singapore.
Combining study with running a business he established in Christchurch, he gained a PhD in political science with a study of the tribe in 20th century Māori society.
Professor Maaka has published on treaty relationships, urban and tribal, social and economic development of Maori and other indigenous peoples and he is an authority on indigeneity as a global social movement.
After heading the Māori Studies department at the University of Canterbury for twelve years, he moved to Canada in 2003 on promotion to full professor and to head the University of Saskatchewan’s Native Studies department. He took up his appointment at EIT in 2009.
As a member of the Waitangi Tribunal from 1996 to 2011, he took part in several major inquiries, including the Mohaka ki Ahuriri regional claim and, Wai 262,the Indigenous Flora and Fauna and Intellectual Property claim.
On announcing his appointment as emeritus professor, EIT chief executive Chris Collins said Professor Maaka’s academic excellence was well-recognised by his peers and he continued to be active within his field of research in local, national and international forums.
Most recently Professor Maaka has been undertaking research for a book he is co-authoring on a history of D Company of the 28th Māori Battalion and he is also planning a book on the consequences of treaty settlements.
Professor Maaka continues with his academic career through his roles as academic advisor for the recording of the history of Treaty of Waitangi settlements, principal investigator for a proposed investigation of Māori participation in the Hawke’s Bay economy, coordinator and presenter of Treaty of Waitangi workshops, coordinator of environment restoration workshops, thesis supervisor, and as a research and scholarship grants referee.
Professor Maaka is also an active leader in a number of community organisations.
Marking his appointment as emeritus professor, Professor Maaka is to deliver a public lecture on the consequences of Treaty settlements for Māori at 12pm on Thursday, 30 July in EIT’s lecture theatre one, adjoining the Tim Twist Library.