Committee Information

Committee Name: Summit of the Maori Iwi, 1860
Organ: Regionals
Undersecretary-General: Jose Villalobos Gonzalez
Deputy Undersecretary-General: Julie Antão
Chair and Crisis Manager: John Erath and Stephen Golden
Topic A: Treaty of Waitangi and Land Disputes
Topic B: Ongoing Clashes with British Settlers and Between Tribes
Topic C: Religious Leaders and Movements

The Topic Abstract for this committee can be accessed here.

A Letter from the Chair

Whatungarongaro te tangata toitū te whenua- As man disappears from sight, the land remains

Kia ora delegates, and welcome to the Summit of the Maori! The year is 1860, and the Maori King Tāwhiao has called the chieftains of iwi (tribes) and hapu (sub-tribes) from across the North Island of modern-day New Zealand to discuss the possibility of war with British settlers. The cause? Gradual encroachments on Maori land claims since the signing of the 1840 Treaty of Waitangi, culminating in active aggression towards the Maori heartlands. Though we are but temporary flashes on this earth, the land that our ancestors tended is permanent, and we must not let it fall into foreign hands.

This committee will put delegates at the heart of colonialism and allow them to experience firsthand the development of colonial systems. Today, New Zealand is unique among settler societies in the role its native people play in its society and culture. Unlike the US and Australia, where native populations were nearly wiped out, Maori comprise over 10% of the island’s population, and Maori language and culture have seeped into every aspect of daily life, even for Pākehā (white) populations. Delegates will see the development of the colonial system, and have the opportunity to actively shape the future in their favour. Will the Maori make peace with the British? Assert their right to exist as an independent protectorate? Drive the British off the island completely? Or will they be crushed under the colonialism and imperialism of foreigners? That is for you, delegates, to decide.

Ngā mihi nui,

John Erath

Chair, Summit of the Maori Iwi

[email protected]

About the Chair

John Erath is a Junior in the School of Foreign Service studying International History with a focus on Latin American military history and is incredibly excited to be your Chair for the Summit of the Maori Iwi, 1860, at NAIMUN LV this year. He is also pursuing a Certificate in Australia and New Zealand studies and minoring in Portuguese, so if you have interests in any of those fields, he is more than capable of talking about them for hours on end. When John is not traveling with Georgetown’s MUN team or staffing conferences, he works with Residential Living at Georgetown and participates in College Republicans and the 1634 Society. This will be his 7th NAIMUN and after years as a delegate, general staffer, and member of secretariat, he can’t tell you how much he is looking forward to meeting you all in the spring.


About the Crisis Manager

Stephen Golden is a junior in Georgetown’s School of Foreign Service, majoring in regional and comparative studies. He has been involved in Model UN throughout high school and college. In addition to Model UN, Stephen is heavily involved in service organizations and is also involved in club soccer and a Latin dance performance group. Stephen will  also be studying abroad in Rabat, Morocco this Fall and cannot wait to be back on the Hilltop for the Spring and for NAIMUN!

Learning Goals

NAIMUN strives to provide the most well-rounded educational and enjoyable experience to delegates. The learning goals for the Summit of the Maori Iwi are as follows. Delegates will gain:  

  • A better understanding of a rarely talked about region in the world, which has historically held an important role in diplomatic affairs, international negotiations and treaty implementation.
  • Knowledge of the perils of treaty negotiations and the need for better communication and understanding between parties.
  • Conscience of the abuse of indigenous populations and colonization, which has systematically left certain populations without a voice in the international field and the ability to defend themselves against larger players in the international field.