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Decolonising Decision-Making

Decolonising homes, towns and cities – Māori decision-making about housing, community and land

Māori Case Studies, in the research programme 'Making the Architecture of Decision-Making Work for Better Homes, Towns and Cities', Building Better Homes, Towns and Cities - National Science Challenge

Fiona Cram, Katoa Ltd, and Fleur Palmer, AUT

Māori who are not homeowners are facing increasing accommodation costs, if not homelessness. Their home ownership aspirations are fading in the face of house prices that are increasingly unaffordable for those on low to middle incomes. The outcome is declining whānau access to housing that provides them with accommodation security and a sense of place, and that facilitates their health and wellbeing. Initiatives to support quality Māori housing and facilitate home ownership are being developed by Iwi and Māori organisations, often with the support of government funding and local corporate sponsorship. However, there is no ‘silver bullet’ and housing initiatives must pay attention to the ‘architecture of decision-making’ if they are to avoid hazards and barriers, and come up with sustainable housing solutions. Two Māori case studies (that are part of the larger project) will follow an Iwi and a Māori organisation over the next 2-3 years and document their bids to develop housing. The focus of these case studies will be on the nature, character and implications of their decision-making practices; the involvement of key actors and their impacts on decision-making; and the implications for decision-making of any information, expertise, and networks provided by the wider research team.