James Henare Māori Research Centre

How does tikanga and Mātauranga Māori apply when designing robots?


Dr Marama Muru-Lanning


James Henare Māori Research Centre

Project code: ART015

Designing robotic software systems for healthcare and social robots requires an understanding of human robot interaction (HRI). It is important to co-produce new technologies with end users.
How does tikanga and Mātauranga Māori apply when designing robots?

Māori place strong emphasis on tikanga, especially around communication and knowledge sharing. This project will apply a Māori lens with respect to designing new technologies such as robots for healthcare and social interactions. This project will explore these concepts by collecting data with Māori and non-Māori experts introduced through the James Henare Research Centre and the Centre for Automation and Robotic Engineering Science. This project will be supervised by Dr Marama Muru-Lanning and Human Robot Interaction expert Associate Professor Elizabeth Broadbent will act as an advisor to the project. Outcomes from this project will identify how Mātauranga Māori may be incorporated to inform design criteria in robots research projects.

Scholar’s Work

The scholar will undertake a literature review to identify, collect and prepare a report of academic literature related to culture and co-development of new technologies. Specific to this project, the scholar will explore tikanga, Mātauranga Māori, relationship building and other cultural aspects and how this relates to technology co-production (targeting robotics) through database searching. To support these findings, the scholar will prepare questions and gather data by meeting with Māori and non-Māori experts (in academia and industry) to explore which aspects of Māori communication and knowledge sharing are important with respect to designing robots for healthcare and social interactions. These findings will be compiled and used in a later study with Māori end users.

Required Skills/Pre-requisites

We are looking for a student with a passion for research, new technologies, excellent computing skills, interest in human robot interaction and a willingness to explore Mātauranga Māori with Māori.

The student should have good communication skills and capable of working in an interdisciplinary team.

Applicants should address these required skills in their application and indicate if they have been in touch with the proposed supervisor.