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Faculty of Economics

Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta awarded Kew International Medal for work to protect nature and stop biodiversity loss. The Economist was selected by the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew to receive the prestigious award following his ground-breaking report The Economics of Biodiversity.


Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta

The Faculty of Economics’ Professor Dasgupta is the author of The Economics of Biodiversity: The Dasgupta Review, which is an independent, global report calling for transformative change in the way we think, act and measure economic success to protect and enhance our prosperity and the natural world.

The Review, published earlier this year, is the first of its kind, providing a comprehensive framework for thinking about and approaching economics, and the decisions it gives rise to, in way which properly accounts for the natural world. It reinforces the compelling narrative that ‘business as usual’ is no longer an option for the future of planet and people.

Professor Dasgupta delivered a lecture at a ceremony at Kew Gardens to mark the award of this year’s Kew International Medal. The Dasgupta Review recommendations are aligned to Kew’s own work and mission to show that all life on Earth, including humanity, depends on nature.

On accepting his award at Kew Gardens, Dasgupta said: “Our long-term prosperity relies on rebalancing our demand of Nature’s goods and services with its capacity to supply them. To do so requires bringing face to face economics and ecology. I’m delighted and honoured to accept this award, from a world-renowned institution which continues to contribute so much to our understanding of the latter.”

During his lecture, Partha commented: “We need to create an affection for nature, and that desecrating nature is in a sense desecrating ourselves. Now how do you do that? Education, we need to understand nature, what Kew does for example. To develop an affection requires an understanding of the amazing mystery of what’s going on in keeping it alive.”

Kew International Medal presentation image

In selecting Dasgupta for this the 14th Kew International medal, Richard Deverell, Director of RBG Kew said: “It is an honour to award this medal to Partha for his passion and commitment to protect nature and stop biodiversity loss for the long-term benefit of people and the planet. The premise of Dasgupta’s Review is very much at the heart of RBG Kew’s own work and mission – that all life on Earth, including humanity, depends on nature. Kew’s experience in over 100 countries documenting, protecting and promoting the sustainable use of biodiversity supports his conclusion that our demands on nature are untenable.

First established in 1992, the prestigious Kew International Medal is an annual award given to individuals for distinguished, internationally recognised work aligned to the mission of Kew. Previous award winners include Sir David Attenborough (1996); Juan Santos, then President of Colombia (2017) and Mary Robinson, Chair of the Elders and former President of Ireland (2018).





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