Learn from the best

Professor Rangi Matamua

Regarded as one of the world's foremost Indigenous astronomers and scholars leading the revitalisation, protection and dissemination of Māori astronomy and mātauranga Māori, Professor Rangi Matamua’s research focuses on Māori astronomy, traditional practice and its relationship to culture, ceremony, religion and environment.  He has a bestselling book ‘Matariki: The Star of the Year’ and his co-curation of a successful museum exhibition on Māori astronomy has coined Rangi's nickname of “The Aotearoa Star Man”. read more ...


Specialising in Māori Knowledge and Development, Māori Astronomy, and te reo Māori revitalisation, Prof Matamua's contribution to the research environment has amassed almost $2 million of external research funding.  An in demand public speaker with the ability to fill lecture theatres to capacity, Prof Matamua expertise are highly sought after.  Watch the video below of Prof Matamua's webseries on Matariki and follow him on Facebook and Instagram.

Quirky Fact

Now an Associate Dean and member of numerous academic committees and governing bodies, Professor Rangi Matamua was once a full-time possum hunter in Te Urewera Ranges - and loved it.  He still claims he only gave it up because his uncle Pou Temara made him.


  • First Māori to win a Prime Minister's Science Award
  • Winner of a Fulbright-Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Scholar Award
  • Graduate of Te Panekiretanga o te reo Māori (a Māori language excellence programme under the guidance of Professor Pou Temara, Professor Tīmoti Karetu and Professor Wharehuia Milroy).
  • Graduate Te Mata Pūnenga (a 3 year traditional karakia wānanga established by Professor Pou Temara)
  • 37 public lectures to more than 5000 participants primarily on Māori astronomy
  • Finalist for Exhibition of the Year 2017 and 2018 for Te Whānau Marama (Co-curator and in partnership with Waikato Museum)
  • Teacher at Te Kura Reo ki Te Waipounamu
  • Teacher at Te Kura Reo ki Rotorua

Appointments and Positions

While it is widely known about the contributions made to Māori Astronomy by Prof Matamua's research, his expert advice is also provided to numerous institutions.  These include:

  • Member of Society of Māori Astronomy Research and Traditions (SMART)
  • Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Research Committee
  • Member of the Fulbright New Zealand NZ Scholar Panel
  • Member of the Primary Panel Māori Knowledge and Development
  • Director of the Centre of Māori and Pacific Development Research
  • External New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) monitor for:
    • Te Wānanga o Aotearoa
    • Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust - He Whakapakari Wellington
  • Member of UOW Postgraduate Research Committee
  • Member of UOW Scholarship Committee

Featured Publications

Prof Matamua's best selling book "Matariki The Star of the Year" is available in English and te reo Māori

  • Matamua, R. -A. L. (2017). Matariki: Te whetū tapu o te tau (Matariki: The Star of the Year). Huia.
  • Matamua, R. -A. L. (2017). Matariki:The Star of the Year). Huia.

Find more research publications by Rangi Matamua

Seize the opportunity to learn from the best.  Professor Matamua teaches the following paper within the Faculty of Māori & Indigenous Studies:

MAORI102 - He Hinatore ki te Ao Maori: Introducing the Maori World

An introduction to the Maori world view, social organisation, cultural concepts including Maori astronomy, and their relevance in a contemporary society.

Student Supervision

Professor Matamua also teaches at the Masters and Doctorate level and is currently supervising 21 Phd students.

Contact details & media tools

Te Pua Wānanga ki te Ao
Professor Rangi Matamua
[email protected]
+64 7 837 9560

For all media enquiries please contact:
Ngāwai Smith
[email protected]
+64 224275433

Follow Prof Rangi Matamua on his Living By The Stars facebook page

Photos and videos available for download: