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ICT Hui brings Māori, local and global ICT talent together

MEDIA STATEMENT 20 February 2017

ICT Hui brings Māori, local and global ICT talent together

Some of Aotearoa’s leading Information and Communications Technology experts are being joined by expat Kiwi and top Google executive Craig Neville-Manning in Auckland today at a one day Hui.

Connecting and Creating at the Edge brings together Māori business, ICT practitioners and users who will share their views on how developments in this fast-moving field will affect them in the future.

University of Waikato alumnus Craig Neville-Manning will explain via video conference what is on Google’s horizon and his latest venture. Professor Shaun Hendy Director of Centre of Research Excellence Te Pūnaha Matatini will explain how machine learning is being used in Māori contexts.

Dr Te Taka Keegan, Senior Lecturer in Computer Science at the University of Waikato and Science for Technological Innovation National Science Challenge Vision Mātauranga Theme Leader, says the hui will discuss some of the challenges and opportunities that developments in ICT present to Māori.

“Rapid advances in ICT are affecting businesses the world over and Māori enterprise is no exception. In particular, advances in IT, data analytics and modelling are driving innovation and there are opportunities for Māori to use these to bring cultural, social, economic and environmental benefits.

“This hui is an opportunity for Māori businesses and organisations to forge connections with Māori ICT experts about how they can harness the power of ICT,” says Te Taka Keegan.

Senior research analyst at the University of Otago and Challenge Kāhui Māori member Dr Katharina Ruckstuhl says despite starting from a small base, Māori business exports were up 15% in 2016.

“Ninety-seven percent of all enterprises in New Zealand are small to medium-sized. It is important that Māori SMEs get the support they need to tap into global markets. ICT is changing how business is done. Māori need to be in on the ground-floor to see where technology could take them.”

The hui is being organised by the Science for Technological Innovation National Science Challenge Kahui Māori (advisory board) in conjunction with Te Waka o Tama-reriti, a nationwide network of Māori expertise that connects Māori to developments in the fields of genomics, informatics, ICT, business and environmental stewardship. It aims to connect Māori to research and funding.

About the Science for Technological Innovation National Science Challenge

The Challenge is one of 11 National Science Challenges targeting specific goals to bring significant, enduring benefits for New Zealand. Its mission is to enhance New Zealand’s capacity to use physical sciences and engineering for economic growth. It involves more than 100 researchers from all New Zealand universities, three crown research institutes and one independent research organisation.

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