Augmented Reality Supporting Sustainable Māori Tourism Development in Tāmaki Makaurau
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The Māori tourism offering in Tāmaki Makaurau has remained low for over a decade compared to nearby regions, despite being the largest city and international gateway for New Zealand. This study aims to investigate how augmented reality (AR) apps can support sustainable Māori tourism development in Tāmaki Makaurau by providing an alternative way of delivering cultural tourism experiences. A kaupapa Māori methodology was used to conduct semi-structured interviews with eleven participants and included those with experience in the Māori tourism industry and/or AR Māori apps. Responses were analysed using thematic analysis and the results are discussed in relation to existing literature. Results indicate that AR is an appropriate medium for sharing Māori stories that creates engaging and immersive experiences for tourists. Furthermore, it can be successfully adapted to fit within the te ao Māori worldview and leverage benefits for Māori wellbeing. Participants identified Tāmaki Makaurau in particular as the most suitable area in New Zealand to offer AR cultural tourism due to the existing infrastructure and capabilities required for successful implementation. This thesis contributes to existing knowledge by demonstrating the potential of AR cultural tourism to offer alternative experiences in Tāmaki Makaurau as well as illustrating the benefits it can feed back into Māori communities to support sustainable Māori development.