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Auckland Airport Tourism Forum: Dan Te Whenua Walker on creating indigenous value-led businesses

26 Apr 2023  By Contributor

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After a three-year hiatus, the Auckland Airport New Zealand Tourism Forum is back for 2023.

Microsoft’s Dan Te Whenua Walker will share his insight into creating indigenous value-led businesses

This year’s event features a fantastic line-up of speakers from across the industry focused on the topic on everyone’s mind – the reset of the Tourism Industry.

Alongside the much-anticipated insights into international aviation trends and airline strategies, attendees of the Tourism Forum will also have the privilege to hear from award-winning Māori business leader, Dan Te Whenua Walker, sharing his wisdom on creating indigenous value-led businesses.

Dan (Tangahoe, Ngati Ruanui, Nga Ruahinerangi, Ngati Kahungunu ki Wairoa, Te Maniapoto, Te Atiawa, Tūhourangi, Pākehā) is Global Co-Chair of Indigenous at Microsoft where he is focused on supporting Indigenous empowerment wherever Microsoft is and raising the Indigenous voice in technology globally.

As well as his role as a Channel Executive across Australia and NZ for the technology giant, Dan is also Deputy Chair of NZ Maori Tourism and a Director of Auckland Unlimited, so is uniquely positioned to share his knowledge at this critical juncture for the tourism sector.

Through the help of his whanau, his elders and his tribal teachers, Dan has learned much of his Maori cultural wisdom through the 15-plus years of service to his iwi tribe Ngati Ruanui.

His experiences shaped his belief that Indigenous wisdom is for everyone and we need to reclaim this wisdom that has been handed down to us.

His Masters degree was about tikanga Maori ki te ao matihiko – Maori values as a framework for digital leadership.

This journey led him down interviews with Indigenous leaders from around the world about Indigenous wisdom from a digital context.

Dan will discuss some of these Indigenous approaches to technology and how Maori are starting to collaborate with modern legal and corporate frameworks for true long-term inter-generational change for our future.

At a time when the industry is looking to build back better and solidify New Zealand’s position as a world-leading tourism destination for generations into the future, there is much to be learned from Dan’s wisdom on creating indigenous value-led businesses.

The Auckland Airport Tourism Forum will take place on 10 May, at Te Pae Christchurch Convention Centre, Ōtautahi Christchurch, at TRENZ, New Zealand’s biggest and most influential tourism tradeshow.

Click here to learn more about this essential event.


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