Open Access Te Herenga Waka-Victoria University of Wellington
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Whakapapa Investment Philosophy: A Māori Way Of Thinking About Investment

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posted on 2021-07-20, 03:25 authored by Brian TunuiBrian Tunui

Māori investment organisations are an influential component of the Māori economy, and yet little is known or written about them and how they function. The thesis will examine three Māori investment organisations and explore their investment philosophy, the elements they consider in their investment decision-making, their decision-making style, and the influence tikanga Māori has in the investment decision. My thesis focusses on Māori investment organisations which invest and manage collectively owned assets for the benefit of Māori people.

The thesis will offer a unique view of Māori investment practices through a whakapapa lens. Each of the three case studies draws on a combination of elements, and highlights areas where a whakapapa investment philosophy is at work. The thesis also discusses a decision-making style that is consistent with a whakapapa investment philosophy.

Kaupapa Māori research is the overarching research methodology used and is combined with inductive and qualitative grounded theory methods. A collective case study approach is used to provide insights into a particular phenomenon occurring within the chosen organisations and to identify the emergence of ideas amongst current practices. The thesis focuses on three investment organisations, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, Wakatū Incorporation and Poutama Trust.

A whakapapa investment philosophy privileges a Māori worldview and offers Māori investment organisations another way to think about investing that considers their history, relationships, knowledge, tikanga, behaviours, and aspirations alongside financial, economic, social and environmental elements. I suggest it will enhance our knowledge of the elements that influence Māori investment organisations, and enhance their ability to provide for their people to live well.


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Date of Award



Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

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Author Retains Copyright

Degree Discipline

Māori Studies

Degree Grantor

Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington

Degree Level


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

ANZSRC Type Of Activity code


Victoria University of Wellington Item Type

Awarded Doctoral Thesis



Victoria University of Wellington School

School of Māori Studies : Te Kawa a Māui


Ross, Mike; Bargh, Maria