Tetchy Bougainville leaders told ‘don’t panic’
Some useful advice to a young person

ANU honours eminent PNG scholar, Ron May

Ron May
Ron May has provided an immense legacy of knowledge and scholarship in 5o years of research and writing about Papua New Guinea


CANBERRA - Emeritus Fellow Ron May is being honoured by a conference and Festschrift (collection of writings) to celebrate his 50-year contribution to research, writing and thinking, especially about Papua New Guinea.

The celebration is hosted by the Department of Pacific Affairs at the Australian National University.

The Festschrift, authored by scholars from and of Papua New Guinea, will be published in 2022.

Since his first engagement with PNG more than 50 years ago, Ron has been a central figure in the planning, management and conduct of social science research in the country.

He was head of ANU’s pre-independence New Guinea Research Institute, first director of the Papua New Guinea Institute of Applied Social and Economic Research and more recently a resident adviser to the PNG National Research Institute.

He has produced a steady stream of publications contributing to knowledge and understanding of PNG. He has supervised the research of numerous PhD candidates whose work related to PNG and acted as a mentor to many scholars in PNG and Australia.

Ron has been a remarkably collegial scholar, as evidenced by the many workshops and conferences he has organised, and the numerous collections of edited papers he has published.

He has maintained this admirable focus on PNG whilst also undertaking research and publication in relation to Australia, Mindanao, Myanmar and West Papua.

Ron also contributed to PNG and Pacific studies more generally through his major role in establishing of the ANU’s State Society and Governance in Melanesia Program.

Ron’s work on PNG traverses a remarkably wide range of subjects including colonialism; ethnicity; micro-nationalism; cargo cults; conflict resolution; impacts of major resource developments; political instability; defence and security; the economy; land; education; Australian policy on PNG and much, much more.

The proposed Festschrift collection will address a range of issues linked to a broad theme of learning about PNG and how it works.

You can link here to see the conference program for Friday 1 October. Contact the Department of Pacific Affairs for further information here: [email protected]


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been saved. Comments are moderated and will not appear until approved by the author. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)