Edited by Matthias Ruth
Chapter 3: Cross-cultural environmental research processes, principles, and methods: coastal examples from Aotearoa/New Zealand
As is the trend worldwide, Aotearoa/New Zealand’s coastal ecosystems are being degraded at unprecedented rates owing to the cumulative impacts of a number of anthropogenic stressors including: enhanced sedimentation and nutrient enrichment caused by farming intensification and land use activities in catchments; increased urban run-off, particularly in areas of high population growth; contaminants, including heavy metals and pesticides, from a variety of sources; over-harvesting fish, shellfish and other species; and, more generally, the impacts of global climate change. In this context, we review the methodological perspectives and methods we used to understand these processes and the cross-cultural approach to our research. Our examples are drawn from two government-funded research programmes: ‘Manaaki Taha Moana – enhancing coastal ecosystems for Iwi and Hap_’ (2009–15), and ‘Nga Maramatanga-a-Papa – terrestrial ecosystem services for Iwi’ (2005–08). For more information, refer to the research website: http://www.mtm.ac.nz/.
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