Amber Nicholson

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Links to relevant web pages:


  • Bachelor of Commerce (First Class Honours), University of Auckland
  • Bachelor of Maori Business Development, Auckland University of Technology
  • Te Pokairua Te Reo Rumakanga, Manukau Institute of Technology


Amber (Ngāruahine) joined the management department as a Lecturer in 2019, teaching in ethics and sustainability, leadership, and diversity. She has ten years of Māori-led research experience through the Mira Szászy Research Centre for Māori and Pacific Economic Development.

Research interests:

Hauora, relational wellbeing
Māori economic development

Amber's PhD thesis, Whenua tūpuna, whenua hauora: Ancestral and relational landscapes, explores ways to enhance wellbeing through recognising and honouring the ancestral landscapes in which business operates. An Indigenous Māori worldview involves spiritual and genealogical ties to the Earth and thus deepens the notion of what is referred to in modern business practice as sustainability.

Teaching summary:

Leadership for change
Ethics and Sustainability

Professional activities:

Appointment, affiliation, and membership

  • Member, Knowledge in Indigenous Network (K.I.N) (2010 - ongoing)
  • Nga Taniwha, University of Auckland (2010 - ongoing)

Research outputs:

Journal articles

  • Nicholson, A. (2020). Te Hihiri: A process of coming to know. MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship, 9(2), 133-142. doi:10.20507/maijournal.2019.9.2.4

  • Nicholson, A. (2019). Hau: giving voices to the ancestors. Journal of the Polynesian Society, 128(2), 137-162. doi:10.15286/jps.128.2.137-162

  • Dell, K., Staniland, N., & Nicholson, A. (2018). Economy of Mana: Where to next?. MAI Journal: A New Zealand Journal of Indigenous Scholarship, 7(1). doi:10.20507/MAIJournal.2018.7.1.5

  • Nicholson, A., Spiller, C., & Pio, E. (2017). Ambicultural governance: Harmonizing Indigenous and Western approaches. Journal of Management Inquiry. doi:10.1177/1056492617707052

  • Nicholson, A., Woods, C., & Henare, M. (2012). Umanga whanaungatanga: Family business. Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues, 15(4), 36-50.

Book chapters

  • Hēnare, M., Lythberg, B., Nicholson, A., & Woods, C. (2017). Te Ohu Umanga Māori: Temporality and intent in the Māori entrepreneurial team. In C. Ben-Hafaïedh, & T. Cooney (Eds.), Research handbook on entrepreneurial teams: Theory and practice (pp. 208-230). Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd. doi:10.4337/9781784713263.00018

  • NIcholson, A., Spiller, C., & Henare, M. (2015). Arohia te rangi o te hihiri: Heeding the melody of pure and potent energy. In C. Spiller, & R. Wolfgramm (Eds.), Indigenous spiritualities at work: Transforming the spirit of enterprise (pp. 273-298). Charlotte, NC, USA: Information Age Publishers.


  • Henare, M., Lythberg, B., Nicholson, A., Horan, J., Longmuir, K., & Peni, T. (2017). Janssen ethnic responsiveness — Understanding cultural drivers that impact on health disparities for Māori in Aotearoa-New Zealand. Mira Szászy Research Centre, University of Auckland Business School.

  • Spiller, M. M., Seelau, R., Seelau, L., & Nicholson, A. (2016). Indigenous Governance: A review prepared for Auckland Council.

  • Nicholson, A., Spiller, M., & Woods, C. R. (2015). Project Kaitiaki : He Whenua Rangatira The Landscape in Harmony.

  • Henare, M. A., Puckey, A., Nicholson, A., Dale, M. C., & Vaithianathan, R. (2011). He Ara Hou: The Pathway Forward. Getting it right for Aotearoa New Zealand’s Māori and Pasifika children. Wellington, New Zealand: Every Child Counts. Retrieved from

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