Advisory Group Member
Maru is managing director, game producer and designer, and development team leader for her award-winning business Metia Interactive. The company is internationally recognised for designing and developing medically therapeutic games.
Maru’s first game ‘Cube’ (a puzzle game with action elements identified as being a great test of mental rotational skills) earned a special mention for innovation in game design in the 2009 United Nations World Summit Awards. In 2011, she went on to win the e-Health and Environment category of these awards for SPARX, a game to help youth manage depression. SPARX also collected a UNESCO Net Explo Award in 2013. Maru became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2016 for her services to the gaming industry and mental health, continuing on to collect an Innovator Award in the 2017 Women In Games Awards and the 2018 Māori Entrepreneurial Leader Award in the University of Auckland Aotearoa Māori Business Leaders Awards. In 2018 she was named as one of the World’s Top 50 Women in Technology by Forbes magazine.
A Board member for Māori Television and the Māori Carbon Foundation, Maru was also one of the first candidates in our Master of Technological Futures programme.