Te Wānanga o Waipapa

Mapping Innovations in Indigenous, Feminist, and Culturally Appropriate Research Methodologies

Supervisor

Dr. Marcia Leenen-Young
Dr. Lisa Uperesa

Discipline

Te Wānanga o Waipapa | School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies

Project code: ART021

Project

In recent years there has been an efflorescence of new Pacific research paradigms and methodologies. While we can recognize that this work builds on previous innovations in Indigenous methodologies more broadly and/or germinal work by intersectional feminist and minoritised community researchers, these links are not well known. This project seeks to highlight the genealogies of Pacific research methods and methodologies, working backwards and forwards from the pivotal publication of Decolonising Methodologies by Linda Smith. This study is in its early phases and the scholars would contribute to mapping these innovations, their connections, and their links to more recent work in Pacific methodologies. The ability to analyse the genealogy of this publication and focus on earlier developments in methodologies by minoritised and feminist researchers would enhance our understanding of the impact these different strands of scholarship have had on the push towards Indigenous-led methodologies in New Zealand. Similarly, analysing the subsequent methodological developments from Smith’s seminal work will enable us to trace the major influences on Indigenous and Pacific methodologies currently so widely used in New Zealand. This proposal is ideally for two scholars to help map these innovations.

Scholar’s Work

The scholar will be focused on reviewing literature (and working toward a final essay submission of 4,000 words each), in conversation with and under mentorship by the co-supervisors. The scholar will also work on a literal mapping of common trends and developments in research methodologies, so the strands in the growth of Indigenous and Pacific-led methodologies can be clearly identified. Students with backgrounds or interest in Indigenous method/ologies, intersectional and global feminist theory and literature, and/or culturally appropriate research methods are especially welcome. The student would have a desk at Pacific Studies for the duration of their appointment.

Required Skills/Pre-requisites

This project is well suited to students with undergraduate/postgraduate experience with research and/or literature reviews. Strong communication skills (written, verbal) are necessary. Ideal applicants are independent, self-motivated, with demonstrated initiative and time management skills. They should have attention to detail and be open to research and technical training. Students with ties/commitments to Māori, Indigenous or Pacific communities are especially welcome.

Timing/Weeks

Both supervisor and scholar will be co-located and based in Auckland. 23-27 Nov; 30 Nov-4 Dec; 7-11 Dec; 14-19 Dec; 11-15 Jan; 18-22 Jan; 25-29 Jan; 2-5 Feb (short week, Auckland Anniversary day); 9-12 Feb (short week, Waitangi Day 8 Feb); 15-19 Feb.

Benefits

The scholar will benefit from this project in two ways. First, they will develop a depth of understanding on the genealogy of Indigenous and Pacific research methodologies, the innovations behind these advancements, as well as the impact and importance on these developments for research with Indigenous and Pacific communities. This will impart/develop a variety of research and scholarly skills that will be a strong foundation for postgraduate study. Secondly, they will be well supported, working closely with the project supervisors to develop clear outputs alongside spending the summer working in a small and close-knit academic department. Future publications drawn from this work will acknowledge to contribution of the scholar.

Outcomes

This is a project that has been discussed and planned by the co-supervisors with projected research outputs that will advance both supervisors’ research agendas. This is an initial exploration of the literature that, while familiar to both supervisors, is yet to be analysed and mapped out clearly. This will significantly advance the first steps of this research project an lay the foundation for future research articles.

Supervisor’s Previous Summer Scholars

Dr Marcia Leenen-Young: No previous Summer Scholars. Dr Lisa Uperesa: Connor Bellett, Caroline Matamua, Te Karu Tuteao, Pamata Toleafoa. 

Colonial Empires in the Pacific: New Zealand, Australia, and ‘decolonisation’ after World War II

Supervisor

Marcia Leenen-Young

Discipline

Te Wānanga o Waipapa | School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies

Project code: ART023

Project

‘Decolonisation’ in the Pacific was an administration process undertaken to align with the contemporary political pressures of a post-World War II global society. The decolonisation experiences of Pacific peoples varied between islands, societal status, economic position, culture, and gender. This project seeks to understand the significance of these so called decolonial processes and prioritise the experiences of Pacific peoples living under the colonial empires of New Zealand and Australia in this period. It seeks to look beyond movements made by governments and the United Nations to highlight the voices of Pacific peoples who lived under these constitutional transformations. This project is archival focused and involves the collection and analysis of archival evidence from repositories in New Zealand, Australia and Fiji. The scholar will build a small database of already collected archival evidence, from government documents to newspaper articles. They will also undergo initial analysis of a section of these archives under the guidance of the supervisor of the project, discussing their findings and overall impressions of the archival evidence.

Scholar’s Work

The scholar will systematically catalogue and collate previously collected archival evidence to build a small database. This will involve discussion with the supervisor about the nature of archival evidence, referencing collections, and chronological/thematic analysis of the evidence. This database will be a key resource for this project and have a large impact on potential outputs. The scholar will also undergo initial analysis of a selection of the archives based on their interests. This will be guided by the supervisor since it will involve methods of primary source analysis. The scholar’s analysis and findings will be written in a final report (4,000 words).

Required Skills/Pre-requisites

This project is ideally suited to students with an interest in archival research, Pacific history, or colonial/decolonial history. While experience in history and primary source analysis would be of benefit to this project, they are not necessary. Students with connections to Māori, Indigenous or Pacific communities are especially welcome. Strong organisation skills and attention to detail are vital for this project. An ideal applicant will be independent with time-management skills and an ability to problem-solve and use their initiative to overcome challenges. They should be open to working closely with the supervisor to develop strong analytical skills and methods of historical analysis. The student would have a desk at Pacific Studies for the duration of their appointment.

Timing/Weeks

Both supervisor and scholar will be co-located and based in Auckland. Supervision will commence 23 November and continue until 19 February (excluding the mandatory closedown period). The supervisor will not be on campus the week 25-29 January, so this is excluded from the 10-week schedule.

Benefits

The scholar will benefit in several ways from participating in this project. They will gain experience in analysing and organising a wide range of archival documents, alongside an understanding of how to understand and examine primary sources. Under the guidance of the supervisor, the scholar will also learn to draw connections between archival documents and form initial understandings of historical developments. If the initial analysis or findings from the scholar are significant, there is also potential for them to be involved with presentations or publications on the research. The scholar will also benefit from being part of a small academic department where they can spend some time in an academic environment and come to know some of the other academics and postgraduate students. This will provide an opportunity to explore the potential of postgraduate study for the scholar and may help inform decisions about study direction and focus.

Outcomes

The summer scholar will be working on part of an FRDF project. The archival work done by the scholar will significantly support this research project. In particular, the scholar will advance this project by collating and undertaking initial chronological and thematic analysis of the copies of archival records already collected (and potentially added to by the end of November depending on the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic). The collection of archival evidence is already extensive and requires clear categorisation to connect primary sources and historical developments. This will support timely and efficient analysis of the archival findings and therefore, assist the supervisor in meeting the expected research outputs.

Manalagi Repository

Supervisor

Dr Patrick Thomsen (Ext 6757)

Discipline

Te Wānanga o Waipapa | School of Māori Studies and Pacific Studies

Project code: ART034

Project

This project is designed to assist in undertaking the groundwork needed to implement the newly HRC-funded Manalagi Project to which Dr Thomsen is the Principal Investigator. The Manalagi Repository project aims to begin the work of creating a repository that will document online and index relevant data and sources that is currently available on Pacific Rainbow and queer communities in Aotearoa New Zealand. At present, no such repository exists and the Manalagi Project will be the first project to look specifically at the health and wellbeing of our country’s Pacific queer communities. The development of a repository at the University of Auckland will also allow future researchers and students interested in Pacific queer communities to make use of its resources in developing their own future research projects. Due to the dearth of literature into these communities, the project will need to draw from a wide range of national surveys, published personal narratives and articles, art, videos, music, film, documentaries, newspapers, magazine clippings etc. The ensuing repository will help immensely in framing the subsequent community fono, which is part of the Manalagi Project’s co-community design model that will launch in its entirety in the first half of 2021.

Scholar’s Work

The summer scholar will be asked to work from the Manalagi Project’s already extensive literature review to collate and index additional sources. The scholar will be required to not only locate additional sources but develop an annotated bibliography that will assist in the further refinement of the Manalagi Project’s existing literature review. Further to this, they will work with their supervisor to produce a separate literature review that will be developed into a state of the discipline journal article that they will submit for co-publishing in an academic journal at a later date. The scholar will also be asked to participate in planning meetings for the Manalagi Project’s community consultation fono, and dependent on their performance, may also be asked to work as an RA for the Manalagi Project in 2021.

Required Skills/Pre-requisites

Be of Pacific or Māori heritage or have experience working with Pacific communities; Have experience in or working with Pacific queer/Manalagi communities and groups; Strong desire to pursue research into Pacific queer/Manalagi communities at a postgraduate level at the University of Auckland; Strong desire to learn more skills in developing research projects based on the values of Pacific research ethics; Can demonstrate a high level of analytical and critical writing aptitude.

Timing/Weeks for Summer Scholarship Both supervisor and scholar will be co-located and based in Auckland. Begin: 30th November 2020 End: 19th February 2021.

Benefits to Scholar

The scholar will be privy to world-first research in a field that is newly-emerging in New Zealand. They will be given the opportunity to publish in an academic journal, be given first hand exposure to a major research project being designed and implemented as well as develop a sound basis of which to base further post-graduate research and study plans upon. Moreover, they will have the chance to sharpen their analytical and writing skills as well as the opportunity to work with their supervisor in the future. The summer scholar may well be asked to RA for the Manalagi Project in the future. The summer scholar will also be given co-authorship credit in the establishment of the Manalagi Repository.

Outcomes

The creation of the repository will strongly assist the Manalagi Project by providing a sound empirical basis in which to draw from for the design of the community consultation fono. Moreover, the ensuing repository will help to stimulate future research papers and journal articles necessary in helping build a body of research work for me in the discipline. The publishing of a state of the discipline paper will be of great benefit to the scholar and supervisor as they build their research portfolios.