Building enduring partnerships with Māori so they can play a more active role in the sustainable management and economic development of land and water is a key part of the Challenge.
“The Māori world view is a holistic approach that seeks to understand the total system, not just parts of it”, says Ken. “We are all part of a very big interconnected system – soil, water, plants, animals, and most importantly, people, all interacting in complicated ways. We want to understand how all of these bits work together, not just the science stuff but, critically, how and why people operate in particular ways and respond to various opportunities and barriers.”
Those opportunities and barriers include the adoption of new technology. As Ken notes, the average time it takes for new technology to be fully adopted in New Zealand and Australia is 16 years. “Intergenerational change is too slow”, he says. “We need intragenerational action. Part of the current lag is because transition pathways are not clear or compelling enough. One of our main aims is to encourage new ways of working and incentivise transition so we can at least halve that adoption time.”