Prof. Pou Temara

Professor in Te Reo & Tikanga


Learn from the best.

Pou Temara is Professor of Reo and Tikanga and is a recognised tohunga and authority in Māori language, ancient karakia, kapa haka and whaikōrero. Using traditional karakia, he has performed many opening ceremonies for new buildings, composed numerous award winning items in kapa haka, and his specialist esoteric skills are constantly called upon.

He is one of three directors of Te Panekiretanga o Te Reo, the Institute of Excellence in the Māori Language, where he teaches and researches whaikōrero, karanga, and tikanga. He was a member of the Māori Advisory Committee, and a former member of the Tūhoe Waikaremoana Māori Trust Board. He was also a past chairperson of Te Hui Ahurei a Tūhoe.

Professor Temara has written many publications and essays on issues currently affecting Māori.  His Master’s thesis, titled ‘Te Ahua o Te Kupu Whakaari, The Nature of Prophetic Sayings’, is still considered the benchmark for a thesis written in Māori.

He was appointed to the Waitangi Tribunal in 2008, is a past director of the Māori unit for Radio New Zealand and appears in many Waka Huia series as an expert commentator on historical affairs.  He was instrumental in the creation of the first Māori language series screened on Television New Zealand in 1982, appearing as the presenter for Kōrero Mai.

In 2012 his work was acknowledged at the national Te Waka Toi Awards, which celebrate excellence in Māori arts. He was recognised for his mastery of language with Te Tohu Aroha mō Ngoi Kumeroa Pēwhairangi.

In 2013 Professor Temara received an Honorary Doctorate of Philosophy (Hon Causa) in Māori Development from the Whakatane-based Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi.

He is Chairperson of the Repatriation Advisory Panel to Te Papa Museum, and in 2016 was made a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for his services to Māori and Education.

Professor Temara continues his work in education as a lecturer, expert and mentor with the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies at the University of Waikato.

Where most researchers pride themselves on producing books, Matua Pou's point of difference is that his research output is not only in the written word, but in people.  His knowledge is strengthening and educating people to be better equiped to take traditional Māori tikanga forward and apply it in a contemporary context.


Indigenous Education; Learning Languages and Education; Maori; Maori Arts; Maori Culture/Tikanga; Maori Development; Maori Development and Education; Maori Education; Maori Governance; Maori History; Maori Identity; Maori Land and Community; Maori Language; Maori Legal Issues; Maori Research; Te Kotahitanga; Te Reo (Maori Language); Treaty of Waitangi

Papers Taught

REOM316 - Te Reo Ahurei
TIKA310 - Ngā Pepeha, ngā Whakataukī me ngā Kupu Whakaari: Proverbial and Prophetic Sayings
TIKA363 - Mana Motuhake: Tribal Regeneration

Current Supervision

Te Kāhautu Maxwell - PhD student. Thesis title: Te Kura i Awarua: Ritual Practice and Death in the Ringatu Canon

Recent Publications

Find more research publications by Pou Temara

Contact Details

Name  Extn.  Username  Room  Department
Temara, Prof Pou 9523 mauriora ITS.G.23 Te Pua Wananga ki te Ao

You can contact staff by:
  • Calling +64 7 838 4466  select option 1, then enter the extension
  • Extensions starting with 4, 5, 9 or 3 can also be direct dialled:
    • For extensions starting with 4: dial +64 7 838 extension
    • For extensions starting with 5: dial +64 7 858 extension
    • For extensions starting with 9: dial +64 7 837 extension
    • For extensions starting with 3: dial +64 7 2620 + the last 3 digits of the extension  e.g. 3123 = +64 7 262 0123
  • Emailing
  • Using the campus map to locate their room