Books to PNG: Professional library of the late Malcolm Levett (1949-2010)

Dr Mike Bourke (SSGM, ANU) and Dr Mike Cookson (ANU Pacific Institute) have just sent another consignment of books to PNG. This shipment consisted of approx. 300 kg of books, many from the professional collection of the late Malcolm Levett (1949-2010).

Malcolm Levett was born and raised in Kent before moving to London to commence a Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Chemistry at the University of London. Soon after hte completion of his B.Sc., he moved to New Zealand to take up a PhD scholarship at Lincoln University in Christchurch. He completed his PhD in 1978 and married shortly before moving to PNG to take up a position in 1981 with the Department of Primary Industry (later the Department of Agriculture and Livestock). A few years later he and his wife moved to the Laloki Research Station (now part of the National Agricultural Research Institute, NARI). They moved again in 1986 so Malcolm could take up a new position at the Highlands Agricultural Experiment Station at Aiyura. In late 1987, he and his (growing) family moved to the Lowlands Agricultural Experiment Station at Keravat (now also part of NARI) and not long after transferred to Vudal College*. In late 1989, Malcolm and his family moved to UPNG, where he became Head of the Department of Geography and ran Unisearch. In mid-1997, he left UPNG but continued his work in PNG with the Swiss firm SGS. In January 2010, afflicted with a debilitating motor neurone disease, Malcolm left PNG with his family and moved to Cairns. On 28 April 2010, Dr Malcolm Levett passed away. He is survived by his wife Linda and their four children.

We would like to express our sincere condolences to the Levett family and our gratitude to them for their generous gift. Dr Mike Bourke has arranged for these books to be donated to the National Agricultural Research Institute (NARI) in Keravat, along with other books from retired academics at ANU and elsewhere. The library collection at NARI Keravat is being rebuilt after a fire destroyed its original collection two years ago. The latest consignment also included books for several academic departments at UPNG (Social Work and Anthropology) and some remaindered copies of a book co-edited by Levett, Changes in Food and Nutrition in Papua New Guinea: Proceedings of the first Papua New Guinea Food and Nutrition Conference. A limited number of copies of this book are available from the ANU (Dr Mike Bourke – or if you are in PNG, from the UPNG Bookshop (

[* Vudal College was established in 1965. In the early 2000s it became Vudal University and is now known as the PNG University of Natural Resources and Environment.]

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One Response to Books to PNG: Professional library of the late Malcolm Levett (1949-2010)

  1. Hi.
    I look after the library at NARI, Keravat and would like to confirm our receipt of the mentioned 300 kg (10 boxes ) of books donated. Thank very much indeed to all of you who gave and we know you gave from your heart because this is very relevant information you have given away. Special thank you to Linda Levett for donating Dr Levett’s books – we remember u ‘na tok sori lo dai blong Malcolm.”
    Your names still ring a bell from the past in our minds.

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