The focus of this paper is on the challenges faced by contemporary Māori leaders and the strategies employed to overcome these challenges. The paper is a personal reflection of the Manu Ao Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Māori leadership wānanga. It brings together the academic and personal experiences of some of the wānanga presenters identifying a range of issues that impact upon Māori leadership in a broad sense, Māori research, the obligatory nature of researchers to both the ‘researched’ communities and requisite responsibilities in the production of knowledge. Throughout this programme I was inspired by the range and excellence of all the speakers, many of whom posed challenges to what or how Māori leadership is fashioned in this new and contemporary cultural landscape.

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