Māori sector challenges

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At the launch event for Tahi in 2014, then EY Chairman Rob McLeod identified structure and governance as the two big issues facing the Māori sector.

  • Traditional tribal structures must be depoliticised with robust governance arrangements set in place
  • The right support tools to ensure decisions are made for the benefit of all beneficiaries.

Three key challenges exist, together comprising the three pillars for sustainable Māori sector success:

  1. Tribal development by design

    Tribal economies are significant and growing but pressure is mounting on Māori organisations to distribute wealth in a way that makes a meaningful difference to the current generation. Alongside this is the debate as to whether treaty settlement monies should be used to tackle socio-economic issues. The challenge is how to design schemes to distribute this economic wealth for sustainable and holistic tribal nation-building.

  2. Māori-led defence against "zombie towns"

    Tribal-led development is regional development, meaning tribal economies can, and should, drive regional economies. Iwi and hapu are here to stay, unlike most businesses which come and go. They are intrinsically invested in the long-term success of their regions. Central and local government, and the tribes, have a vested interest in making regional economies work.

  3. Time to de-clutter the sector

    There are too many organisations dealing with iwi, hapū, marae, Māori land, education and health. All focus on common, well-intended, aspirational kaupapa (primarily socio-economic 'causes') that must be addressed but do not require any real or intense competition.

    Smart aggregation is required to eliminate the overlaps and wastage, lower costs and improve efficiency.

    Back-office shared service centres within large iwi and amongst natural tribal or regional clusters are part of the solution and should be the norm within five years.

EY Tahi is working alongside our clients and stakeholders on policy advice, strategy and execution to effect change in each area.

Read more about Tahi’s services and examples of recent work.

Accelerate Māori success