Pia Pohatu, Researcher, Hikurangi Enterprises Ltd (Ngati Porou, Rongowhakaata, Ngai Tamanuhiri).

PiaPia is a a researcher and projects co-ordinator. Her background is in iwi and hapu environmental planning and kaupapa Maori, community-based research.  She has worked for Te Runanaga O Ngati Porou (Ngati Porou Hapu Environmental Management Plans Project), Te Whare Wananga O Ngati Porou (Waiapu Research Project – TWWX01: Maori Community Goals for Enhancing Ecosystem Health) and Te Puni Kokiri – Ministry of Maori Development (Gisborne Regional Office).  Her interests include te reo me ona tikanga, environmental restoration and sustainability models for communities with a particular interest in whanau and hapu leadership, infrastructure and enterprise.

Pia is mama to her boys Arapeta Te Wa and Kauere Maaka and enjoys travel, kohi kaimoana, learning local histories and spending time with her whanau.

Sophie Hale, Research Analyst, Motu Economic & Public Policy Research Trust.

SophieSophie joined Motu in July 2018, having completed her masters in ecology at the University of Canterbury. At Motu, Sophie works in the Environmental team. At present she manages the Waro Project, investigating the use of the New Zealand ETS to facilitate native forest regeneration on Maori land, focussed in Tairāwhiti.

Sophie loves tea, tramping, football, jazz, and auntying. More recently she’s also started undertaking ambitious craft projects.


Dr Suzi Kerr, Senior Fellow, Motu Economic & Public Policy Research Trust.

Staff portraits for Motu Economic and Public Policy Research, Wellington, NZ.

Suzi is a Senior Fellow at Motu. She is a member of and special adviser to the New Zealand Interim Climate Change Commission. She graduated from Harvard University in 1995 with a PhD in Economics.

Her current research work focuses on climate change. She lives in Wellington with her musician partner and their two daughters, but spends most weekends at their land up in Otaki Forks.


Sandra Cortes-Acosta, PhD student, Victoria University of Wellington.

Sandra Cortes AcostaI am Colombian doing some Environmental Studies at Victoria University. I came to New Zealand with the intention of learning about Māori collective land management, in the hope that this experience will offer insights into new models of land management for my country. I think Māori can set a positive example for others to follow.



Manu Caddie, Project Advisor, Hikurangi Enterprises Ltd

manuI have a background in community development and currently work with landowners to commercialise ideas based on local resources and sustainable job creation.




Leo Mercer, Masters student, Victoria University of Wellington.