Aroha Te Pareake Mead is a political scientist who works across disciplines on indigenous rights and sustainable development issues. From the Ngati Awa and Ngati Porou (Māori) tribes of the Bay of Plenty region, Aroha’s particulars areas of interest and expertise are:
• Māori/Indigenous Cultural and Intellectual Property issues
• Biocultural heritage and biocultural conservation
• Māori representation and engagement in International Processes
• Indigenous perspectives on Biotechnology, Bioethics, Synthetic Biology, Gene-Editing
• Māori/Indigenous advancement and sustainable development
Aroha has held positions in public policy, academia, international organisations and the not for profit sector. She currently works as an independent resarcher and advisor. She is a member of the Sustainability Advisory Panel of FONTERRA, as well as on the Kahui Maori of the Deep South National Science Challenge (Climate Change) and the Kahui of Genomics Aotearoa. She is also on the Repatriation Advisory Panel of Te Papa Tongarewa and is Chair Emeritus of the IUCN Commission on the Environmental, Economic and Social Policy (CEESP).
Aroha previously held a range of senior policy management positions in Te Puni Kokiri primarily responsible for cultural heritage, resource management and indigenous rights issues. She has also worked for the Education Review Office, Human Rights Commission and as a Journalist and Documentaries researcher for TVNZ. She was Director of the Maori Business Unit, of Victoria Management School, Victoria University of Wellington 2000-2016. She has held governance positions in the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) and Greenpeace New Zealand. She was the Chair of the IUCN Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy from 2008-2016.