Alexandra Hare, Anna Lindgren, Divya Ranchhod (Aurecon)
Te Wehi Wright, Te Pare Meihana (Te Amokura Consultants)
David Hogg, Jessica Grinter (Stantec)
Garry Macdonald, Garrett Hall (Beca)
"He pukenga wai, he pukenga kōrero" speaks to the interconnectedness of wai and people. In this instance, it relates to a body of water bringing with it a body of knowledge (kōrero). This name derives its origins from a well-known whakataukī, “He pukenga wai, he nohonga tāngata, he nohonga tāngata, he putanga kōrero" which translates to “where waters meet, people meet, where people meet, knowledge flows".
In Aotearoa, Taumata Arowai the new regulatory agency, aims to lead the regulation of water services in a way that gives effect to Te Mana o te Wai1 , is consistent with the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and to further affect positive
change within the water services sector. To carry out this function, Taumata Arowai requires a comprehensive understanding of the water sector knowledge landscape in Aotearoa and internationally, to inform future governance frameworks, policies, partnerships and investment. This includes drinking water, stormwater and wastewater services.
As a first step towards gaining this understanding, Taumata Arowai formed a partnership with Aurecon, Stantec, Te Amokura Consultants, and Beca to deliver he pukenga wai, he pukenga kōrero; a research project that aimed to map out the knowledge landscape of water/wai with respect to the following questions:
• What is happening in the knowledge investment landscape pertinent to Taumata Arowai’s role with regards to Mātauranga Māori?
• What is happening in the knowledge investment landscape pertinent to Taumata Arowai’s role across Aotearoa generally?
• What happening in the knowledge investment landscape pertinent to Taumata Arowai role internationally?
He pukenga wai, he pukenga kōrero will establish Mātauranga Māori at the forefront of thinking across the knowledge landscape. In approaching this mahi the partnership team structured the research focus and the ultimate deliverables around the pou of Taumata Arowai (Ko wai, Ko au and Ko tatou; outlined in the table below) and the aspiration of Tiakina te wai, hei oranga mō te katoa (safe water every day for everyone) which guided the project overall. This paper describes the process followed in establishing the partnership and delivering the project outcomes, with the hope of inspiring others in the Aotearoa New Zealand industry to follow this example.