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Ed Sheeran

Cold start to voyaging stories

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A University of Waikato academic says there are strong links between early Polynesian and Māori explorers and the Southern Ocean.

Sandy Morrison has been appointed to lead the Deep South Challenge’s Vision Mātauranga programme, including doing foundational research on iwi accounts of those voyages.

The science challenge has the responsibility to improve understanding of sea ice, clouds and ocean in the Antarctic and Southern Ocean region, but it is also increasingly focussed on climate impacts in Aotearoa, and on supporting communities to adapt to climate change.

Associate Professor Morrison says because the Southern Ocean and Antarctica don’t feature on most maps, people lose sight of how it is connected to Aotearoa and the South Pacific.

"We actually can bring forth many, many stories that hapū and iwi still have, even if they are fragments they all still start to form a coherent whole, and I can say we were present and we were voyaging in the Southern Ocean and it has been very much part of some of the navigation journeys," Associate Professor Morrison says.

She will share her research on Māori in Antarctica in a webinar on Monday July 27,

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