September 2012 Māori Law Review

Editorial – re-launching the waka (2)

Tēnā koutou kātoa.  Ngā mihi maioha ki a koutou.

The Māori Law Review has been a feature of the Māori legal world for nearly twenty years and it is both exciting and daunting to be involved in re-energising this publication.

Those who practice in the Māori Land Court, the Waitangi Tribunal, or who otherwise work with the law in these and related areas, will know that when Tom Bennion started to produce the Review, he established a valuable reporting series, which quickly became a vital resource. I am grateful to Tom both for the strong foundation that he has laid for the Review and for the trust that he has placed in myself and Craig Linkhorn to take the Review forward.

The new team is very pleased that Tom retains a close connection with the Review in his role as a consultant editor and occasional contributor.  Also on our board of consulting editors are Māori Land Court Judge Craig Coxhead, Dr Jacinta Ruru, and Māmari Stephens.  Together, this group brings a wealth of experience and expertise and keeps the Review connected to the judiciary, practitioners, and the academy.

The relationship with the academy is further enhanced by the Review’s new relationship with the Faculty of Law at Victoria University of Wellington. Professor Tony Smith, Dean of Law and Professor Piri Sciascia, Pro-Vice Chancellor (Māori) have both been tremendously supportive of the Review’s re-launch and the association with the Faculty provides many new opportunities.

There are also new opportunities that arise from the developing online environment.  We aim to use the Māori Law Review’s new website to be able to provide a more complete record of legal developments than is possible in the print edition, and also to make reports on those developments available to readers much sooner.

However, the key objectives of the Review remain the same as ever.  The Review will continue to provide reliable and informed analysis of developments in the law relating to Māori from a range of expert contributors.  It is a valuable resource for practitioners, Māori organisations, government officials, researchers and others with an interest in the area.  The impact of Māori legal issues on the law generally is only growing. Wider audiences want informed analysis to help with their work. Finally, I hope that the Review will assist all those who work in this field to respond justly and with a clarity of vision to the challenges and opportunities that continue to arise in this dynamic area of law.

Carwyn Jones

September 2012