For a long time I have thought Maori have much to teach the rest of us (in Aotearoa/New Zealand and in general). Maori have had many generations living with each other and the environment, and have had to retain, adapt and develop their culture through tough colonial, post-colonial and now global times.
Much has been made of the need for innovation and creativity to address concerns about disruptions to the global economy, its ecology and how this will impact on the quality of peoples lives. At the same time, much of this technological innovation helps to ensure citizens remain distracted and disengaged from much of what is happening or, most significantly, what they could possibly do about it.
It has been Graduation Week at Canterbury University in Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand. It was a 21st Century experience of tradition – the regalia, the music, and ceremony – and a celebration of the value of university education itself.
"If people can see Earth from up here, see it without those borders, see it without any differences in race or religion, they would have a completely different perspective. (Anousheh Ansari, Iranian-American space tourist)
There is a need to be flexible when dealing with change. However, the danger of the current top down way of dealing with change (such as the current economic turbulence) is it will only serve to put out some fires which protect a few, for a while. A more comprehensive approach to dealing with change is needed.
Guest blogger John Gallagher asks how New Zealand can best relate to the wider world in the context of major changes. These include: new communications technologies, globalization, Asian migration, economic growth and dominance of places like Japan, China and India, and acute resource constraints and ecosystem pressures.