What are the perspectives of a Ngāti Rākau community towards a potential digital repository for urupā records?
Research problem: Little is known about management of urupā records. The objective of this research was to explore the need for a digital repository. This research project explored how Ngāti Rākau urupā records are currently managed in terms of discoverability, accessibility and sustainability, how records should be managed and potential barriers to a digital repository. Methodology: This research project used an indigenous Kaitiakitanga framework to understand a Māori world view. A Kaupapa Māori paradigm and a co-design approach were also used for the design to appropriately conduct research with Māori participants. A qualitative methodology was used to gain attitudes and opinions from Ngāti Rākau participants. Results: No written records exist through Mōtuiti Marae. Urupā records are currently managed through oral and kanohi ki te kanohi assimilation. Participants support documentation of Ngāti Rākau urupā records. Clarifications around digital protection of urupā records will need to be communicated before a digital repository is created. Potential barriers include generational views, modern Māori perspectives versus traditional perspectives, the desire to uphold cultural traditions and a fear of shared records. Implications: The study was restricted to one hapū and only five participants. Further research could explore how information should be presented and how other hapū and iwi feel about the digitisation of urupā records for more generalised findings.