Counselling Maōri: Relationships to space and implications for design

  • YEAR
    Liddicoat, Stephanie
    2016 Conference Papers
    Architectural Science, Theory, Philosophy, Society
    Conference Papers


Mental health services in New Zealand have undergone changes since the 1980s with regard to how Maōri values and Maōri ways of thinking can be integrated into the assessment and delivery of care for mental health consumers. Key to this change is the understanding of Maōri psychological frameworks2 and how this can relate to improved consumer experience and outcomes. Maōri psychological frameworks are defined as a set of values, ways of doing things and understandings, which shape these individuals’ interaction with the world. As explored in this paper, Maōri psychological frameworks also encompass influential spatial dimensions, including how built features and building design informs behaviours, influences emotions and relates closely to the delivery of mental health services. Delivery of mental health services on a marae, a traditional community building/meeting house, is practiced in New Zealand, however is not always possible due to service delivery limitations. Using the marae as a platform for analysis, this paper explores Maōri psychological frameworks in relation to therapy and counselling, and the built environment. Using architectural science principles with regards to examining the way buildings are used and how well they physically fit their function, this paper explores Maōri understanding of built environments to enable a better design of the spaces for therapy and counselling.


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