Our Seas

We identified ways for people to get involved in making decisions about the management and future of Aotearoa New Zealand's marine estate.

Ocean management processes need to be collaborative, with input from Māori, non-industry stakeholders and the public. Effective management should incorporate indigenous knowledge and support Treaty of Waitangi partnerships. 

This programme explored participatory processes and frameworks that involve people in decision-making. We built upon increasing interest from New Zealanders in maintaining healthy estuaries, coasts and oceans. By including a diversity of Māori and stakeholders in decision-making, there is increasing likelihood of gaining a ‘social licence to operate’ because people perceive that their values are being considered and accounted for.  

We developed new frameworks that provide the opportunity for all sectors of society to participate in EBM. These will help develop solutions for ocean management that benefit communities, the economy, and support people who make their living from the marine environment.

Led by Carolyn Lundquist (NIWA/University of Auckland), this programme: 
  • Provided participatory frameworks that support Māori and stakeholder involvement in shaping Aotearoa New Zealand’s marine management
  • Provided best practice guidance for engaging with Māori and stakeholders with an interest in marine resource management
  • Enabled industry to understand how best to approach social licence to operate
  • Helped Māori and stakeholders engage with, and develop trust in, marine science.