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NZEALS 2020 Conference
TŪRANGAWAEWAE: A place to stand

Hold the dates in your diary for the NZEALS biennial conference, to be held from April 15th to 17th 2020 in the attractive setting of the University of Waikato in Hamilton, New Zealand.

Keynote speakers and full programme details will follow shortly. This is an early call for papers on our conference theme of Tūrangawaewae: A place to stand.


Situated at the confluence of the Waikato and Waipa awa (rivers) in Ngāruawāhia, Tūrangawaewae marae is the official residence of Kīngi Tuheitia Potatau Te Wherowhero VII, the seat of Kīngitanga, and the ancestral Aotearoa home of Waikato Tainui. Further afield, tūrangawaewae is a Māori term for the places where we feel greatest allegiance, belonging, empowerment and connection. Tūrangawaewae constitutes the physical, emotional and spiritual foundation on which we stand (tūranga = a place to stand, waewae = feet).

As we join together on Tainui land at the University of Waikato, in April 2020, it seems appropriate that our conference korero (dialogue) should focus on the places where we stand as leaders and the platforms upon which we lead.

Hobbiton, the film set of Sir Peter Jackson's epic film series adapted from J.R.R. Tolkien's classic stories, is the venue for our conference dinner on April 16th and a further inspiration for our conference theme. 

NZEALS therefore invites proposals that engage with one of the three conference sub-themes and the accompanying whakataukī (proverb) or Hobbit quotation.

Conference sub-themes:

Tahi (1): A professional place to stand

Novel and proven ways of thinking about leadership practice and potential, practice architectures, leadership preparation, coaching and mentoring, developing middle leaders

Whaowhia te kete mātauranga – Fill the basket of knowledge
 “A box without hinges, key, or lid, yet golden treasure inside is hid” (J.R.R. Tolkien)

Rua (2): Standing with resilience

Research and experience of leading and sustaining change, educational innovation, leadership horizons, wellbeing

Ko te pae tawhiti whāia kia tata, Ko te pae tata whakamaua kia tīna -
Seek to bring distant horizons closer and sustain and maintain those that have been arrived at.
“It seemed like all the way to tomorrow and over it to the days beyond” (J.R.R. Tolkien)

Toru (3): Standing with awareness

Cultural leadership, micropolitics, community and policy contexts, social justice
Whāia e koe te iti kahurangi; Ki te tūoho koe, me he maunga teitei –
Seek you the little treasure of your heart; if you bow your head, let it be to a lofty mountain.
“It does not do to leave a live dragon out of your calculations, if you live near him” (J.R.R. Tolkien)

The conference will include a mix of session formats to maximise interaction, to enable attendees to participate, debate and enhance their understandings of leadership in education.

This call for papers invites proposals for:
Research papers
Leadership stories – including groups from schools / ECE telling their story

For both types, please prepare an abstract of no more than 200 words using the online form.
You will be informed about acceptance by 1st December.

There will be a later call for the following:
Leading round-table discussion on a conference theme
Joining groups of PechaKucha style quick-fire presentations on a common theme

One day of the programme will have a dedicated Early Childhood Education strand running through it. We will be looking for leaders of these sessions.