HistoryWorks Limited is to sponsor a major conference to be held in Wellington later this year.Indigenous Knowledges: Reconciling Academic Priorities with Indigenous Realities will bring together leading Māori academics and researchers across a range of disciplines, along with indigenous and other scholars from around the world.
The conference, which aims to promote discussion and interaction between academics and indigenous communities as to research priorities from an indigenous perspective, will be held at Victoria University’s Rutherford House from 22-25 June 2005.
For HistoryWorks, the decision to support the conference was an easy one. Director David Armstrong says he was impressed by the inclusive approach to community involvement the conference organisers have adopted. One group of rangatahi are travelling down from Tai Tokerau for the event, while iwi groups are also planning to attend from the Bay of Plenty and Te Tairawhiti.
‘Many of the Māori attending the conference will be well known to us from various Waitangi Tribunal hearings and hui around the motu’, says David, ‘so it will be an excellent opportunity for HistoryWorks to contribute to this gathering. I’m also looking forward to hearing what some of the international delegates have to say’.
The Indigenous Knowledges conference is the first event that HistoryWorks has sponsored since the company was established in June 2004, but the decision is also a first for the conference organisers. Convenor Dr Joanna Kidman (Te Arawa, Te Aupouri) says HistoryWorks is the first sponsor for the conference. ‘We have had awesome support from Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga (the Māori Centre of Research Excellence)’, according to Dr Kidman, ‘but the private sector have been a bit slow to get in behind it, so hopefully this will encourage other firms to follow the HistoryWorks’ lead’. [Added 18 March 2005]