Mātauranga-ā-Whānau: Constructing a methodological approach centred on whānau pūrākau

Marjorie Lipsham


INTRODUCTION: This article discusses the development of a distinctively Māori methodology that centres knowledge and practices that are embedded within whānau. Mātauranga-ā-whānau is a Kaupapa Māori approach that brings a focus upon Māori knowledge that is transmitted intergenerationally.

APPROACH: The development of Mātauranga-ā-whānau as a methodological approach supports both the assertion by Graham Hingangaroa Smith (1997) that Kaupapa Māori must be committed to the validation and legitimation of Māori worldviews and the argument by Leonie Pihama (2001) that there are multiple ways of expressing Māori theories and methodologies. Pihama (2001) highlights that affirming whānau, hapū and iwi ways of being within the broader discussion of Kaupapa Māori is critical. While it is beyond the scope of this article to provide an in-depth discussion of both Kaupapa Māori theory and Mātauranga Māori, it is important to note that both cultural frameworks inform the way in which Mātauranga-ā-whānau is discussed.

CONCLUSIONS: Drawing upon whānau knowledge, experiences and practices, through pūrākau, this article introduces how Māori can approach research applying culturally grounded methodologies.


Kaupapa Māori; ma ̄tauranga Māori; research methodology; Mātauranga-ā- Whānau; Indigenous research; pūrākau

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.11157/anzswj-vol32iss3id766


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