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Current Year Winners

The commemorative lectures by the winners held at the United Nations University (Shibuya Ward, Tokyo) on October 11 (Thursday), at the Kyoto University on 13 (saturday).

2018 Blue Planet Prize Awards Ceremony & Lectures Photo Report

2018 (27th) Blue Planet Prize Winners

Prof. Brian H. Walker

Prof. Brian Walker (Australia)
Born September 23, 1940
Hon. Research Fellow of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) , Hon. Professor, Australian National University




He has had a most significant influence on the development of the concept of resilience in social-ecological systems and has highlighted the need to increase it to maintain human society under changing circumstances. His ideas have exerted a significant influence as resilience has been introduced as a fundamental concept and developed in many fields, including environmental conservation, economics, protection, sustainable development and disaster prevention policy. Inspired by his research and leadership, studies on sustainability and resilience have expanded tremendously. He has produced significant achievements as a pioneer of resilience science and has had an enormous impact on society.


Prof. Malin Falkenmark

Prof. Malin Falkenmark (Sweden)

Born November 21, 1925
Professor of Applied and International Hydrology Senior Researcher at Stockholm Resilience Center, Senior Scientific Advisor to the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI)

She has been the most renowned global hydrologist for many years and has placed water problems onto the global policy agenda. Her novel ideas, such as seeing water as the bloodstream of the biosphere, and her wide-ranging activities for making the world more sustainable, have had an enormous impact on today’s thinking for solving environmental problems. The Falkenmark index is an essential indicator for comparative water analyses. Her green/blue water concept is currently a standard for analysis of agricultural production, which comprises a significant portion of the Planet’s consumptive water use. Since she noticed the relationship between poverty and hunger and water problems in Africa in the 1960’s, she has contributed analyses of both global water scarcity and other environmental challenges.
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Mini-biography video 
Remarks from the Award Recipients upon Notification of their Selection

I am deeply honoured by the award of this prestigious Blue Planet Prize, and am most grateful to the Asahi Glass Foundation for considering me a worthy recipient. The aims of this prize are fundamental to the long-term wellbeing of our planet, and they have been a motivating force behind the development of my life’s research. I have followed the award of the prize for many years and am always impressed by the calibre and the work of the recipients. I am humbled to now be included amongst them. In the latter part of my career I have been working to put into practice the theoretical developments that motivated my earlier years. What I am trying to do aligns closely with the aims of the Blue Planet Prize and this award gives me inspiration and renewed energy to further the incorporation of resilience into planetary sustainable development, from local to global scales.

I owe my deepest gratitude to the Blue Planet Prize Committee for selecting me for one of the two Blue Planet Prizes 2018, thereby drawing high level attention to the lasting efforts I have since the 1970’s devoted to trying to understand the implications of water being the bloodstream of the biosphere. Water’s profound involvement is an issue of essential importance that has partly remained in the shadow of past water resources development efforts. A contributing reason is that much of the analyses remained in the hands of environmental professionals, mainly focusing on liquid water in rivers and aquifers as a natural resource, but neglecting the invisible water in the soil, and its contribution to the biomass production. A global dilemma is that, meanwhile, human population has been increasing to currently 7 billion, with most of the poor and hungry living in Africa with its dominantly arid climate.