Aurecon partners with Te Ao Matihiko to support Māori in digitech

Aurecon’s Dale Nakhla, Sarah Ropata, Charis Renee Tutaki and Soltice Morrison at the Te Hapori Matihiko Awards evening held earlier this year in Porirua, New Zealand.

Improving Māori digital literacy is a key priority for Aurecon to increase representation and diversity in the digitech sector.

International design, engineering and advisory company Aurecon has announced its partnership with Te Ao Matihiko as the company’s latest He Rautaki Māori initiative to increase Māori digital literacy within Aurecon and support Māori working or aspiring to work in digital and technology roles.

Te Ao Matihiko is a merger of Te Matarau – the Māori Tech Association and Te Hapori Matihiko – the Māori digitech community, which were both designed to support Māori representation and participation in the digitech sector while providing opportunities for members to connect, improve their skills, share mātauranga (Māori knowledge), and give back to their communities.

Improving Māori digital literacy is a key deliverable in Aurecon’s Rautaki Māori, says Tracey Ryan, Aurecon New Zealand managing director. “Digital is a future skill set that is vital for a productive and thriving economy where technology is used to drive innovation and productivity. Māori are underrepresented in this area and therefore if we can support organisations such as Te Ao Matihiko to bring through future digital and technology professionals, it has to be good not only for Māori, but also for Aotearoa New Zealand as a whole,” said Ryan.

Te Ao Matihiko is driven by Māori for Māori and while the partnership provides connection and will be an important community for Aurecon’s Māori kaimahi, it will also uplift all of Aurecon regarding Te Ao Māori (Māori world view) connections and digitech views.

Soltice Morrison, Aurecon’s Māori strategy lead, commented: “We see Te Ao Matihiko as an important platform that empowers Māori to connect and learn in an environment that is grounded in Māori principles and values. Through connection and knowledge sharing, we hope to uplift Māori in digitech whilst broadening Aurecon’s capability to appropriately deliver Māori digital kaupapa (subjects).”

Additionally, Te Ao Matihiko organises the annual Matihiko Awards to recognise Māori digitech excellence and create more visibility and leadership opportunities for Māori in digitech. In 2023, Aurecon’s Charis Tutaki was selected as a finalist for the Kaiāwhina Tipu Award recognising the planners, organisers, project managers and people that kept the mahi moving.

Aurecon also sponsored the Kaitiaki o Te Taiao Award which recognises contribution to digital projects which have a positive impact on sustainability and the environment.