A fresh round of funding aimed at building Maori capacity in the digital technology space is underway.
Maori Development Minister Nanaia Mahuta says it’s about helping Maori participate in the modern digital economy.
Already, some $3.6 million is helping 20 projects around the country develop under the Ka Hao Maori Digital Technology Fund. The new funding round will expand this, with applications open since February 9.
Ka Hao aims to create high value jobs and opportunities that advance Maori in digital technologies. Applications must demonstrate how an initiative achieves this aim, and aligns with at least one of the Fund’s priorities:
• Improving digital skills and pathways for Maori in digital technologies
• Growing digital technologies businesses
• Enhancing new Maori language and culture initiatives through digital technologies.
“We want more Maori involved with technology and innovation,” says Nanaia. “Ka Hao supports Maori to develop skills that are key to participating in our digital future.”
Research, Science and Innovation Minister Dr Megan Woods says technology and innovation are important pillars of New Zealand’s economic, environmental, social and cultural wellbeing.
“For Maori to succeed in the 21st century we must foster and build capability in digital technology and support a diverse, knowledge-intensive economy that will create new jobs in new industries.”
Ka Hao (previously known as the Maori ICT Development Fund) is a joint programme between Te Puni Kokiri and the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.
“By providing direct support through the Ka Hao Fund, Maori will have even greater access and success in the digital technology industry,” says Nanaia.
Applicants have until March 9 to submit a short proposal. Selected applicants will then be invited to submit a more detailed proposal to determine which projects will receive funding.
The government is interested in broadening the ambition of the Ka Hao Māori Digital Technology Fund and they say there may be additional focus areas in future funding rounds.
More information on Ka Hao, the application process, and successful applicants to date, is available at: https://www.tpk.govt.nz/en/whakamahia/it-and-innovation/ka-hao-maori-digital-technology-development-fund/.