Associate Professor Jacinta Ruru

Associate Professor Jacinta Ruru

University of Otago Faculty of Law

Tēnā koe. Ko Ngāti Raukawa ki Waikato, Ngāti Ranginui ki Tauranga me Ngāti Maniapoto ngā iwi. Ko Pākehā hoki ahau. He roia kaiwhakaako ahau ki te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo.
I currently teach Laws 101 Legal History, Laws 455 Māori Land Law and Laws 461 Law and Indigenous Peoples.

My research focuses on exploring Indigenous peoples’ legal rights to own, manage and govern land and water including national parks and minerals in Aotearoa New Zealand, Canada, United States, Australia and the Scandinavia countries. I have led, or co-led, several national and international research projects including on the Common Law Doctrine of Discovery, Indigenous rights to freshwater and multidisciplinary understandings of landscapes. One of my major new works is co-editing with Justice Joe Williams a Māori Law Treatise (to be published by Thomson Reuters in 2015 and partly funded by a generous New Zealand Law Foundation grant).

I am co-chair of Te Poutama Māori (the University of Otago Māori academic staff caucus), co-director of the University of Otago Research Cluster for Natural Resources Law and have recently completed contributing to the ‘Old Problems New Solutions’ Landcare Research project. I have organised several conferences including the “In Good Faith” Treaty of Waitangi Symposium (2007) the International Indigenous Legal Water Forum (2009) and the The Australia New Zealand Legal History Conference (2013).

Awards received include the University of Otago prestigious Rowheath Trust and Carl Smith Medal for outstanding scholarly research achievement across all disciplines (2010), the Fulbright Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Senior Māori Scholar Award (2012) and the OUSA University of Otago Association’s New Supervisor of the Year Award (2013).

I am editor of the Resource Management Journal, co-editor of Resource Management Theory and Practice, consultative editor for the Māori Law Review, and book review editor for the Journal of Human Rights and the Environment. I am on the editorial committee for several journals including the Settler Colonial Studies Journal, Australia and New Zealand Law and History Journal, Public Interest Law Journal New Zealand, and Global Journal of Comparative Law.

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