|2015 (24th) Blue Planet Prize Winners|
Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta
FBA FRS ( UK )
Born November 17, 1942
Frank Ramsey Professor Emeritus of Economics, Faculty of Economics,
University of Cambridge
Professor Dasgupta’s pioneering work on welfare economics and environmental economics unified the concepts of intergenerational equity and sustainable development and pointed to their equivalence. He also pioneered the study of rural poverty in developing countries in the context of a deteriorating environmental resource base; and thereby brought together previously disparate fields: development economics and environmental economics. In a wide ranging book on human well-being and the natural environment he showed that the coin by which economic progress should be judged is a comprehensive measure of a nation’s wealth, and not GDP or the many ad hoc indicators of well-being in common use today. He has used those findings to develop an ideal system of national economic accounts, which is being implemented in India and several other countries. His lifelong aim of bringing nature seamlessly into economic reasoning has had a huge impact on contemporary thinking.
Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs ( USA )
Born November 5, 1954
Director, The Earth Institute,
Professor Sachs has an impressive record of helping economies to overcome economic crises and achieve sustainable development. He has furthered human equality by applying his interdisciplinary and innovative “clinical economics,” to resolve issues of governance, poverty, public health, education and the environment, helping to promote smallholder agriculture, social services, and economic development to overcome extreme poverty. As a scholar, practitioner and senior advisor to governments and the United Nations he continues to have an enormous impact on the world.
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|Remarks from the Award Recipients upon Notification of their Selection|
Humanity's engagement with Nature is the most significant feature of our lives and in need of urgent repair. And yet, we mostly avoid addressing it. The institution that is the Blue Planet Prize signals that sad fact annually and brings environmental problems, both in the large and in the small, to the world's attention. It is understandable that global environmental problems attract public interest, but the "large" is made of the myriad of "smalls". Ultimately, if Humanity is to make peace with Nature, the move will have to come from each one of us. Understanding the way we at the individual level tread nature as we go about our lives is the necessary first step to any resolution of the problems we face. In my own work I have tried over the years to understand the ways in which poverty and wealth at the household level leave their distinctive marks on Nature. So, it is both a great honour and an enormous pleasure for me that the perspective I have tried to introduce into our collective thinking has been recognized by the award of the Prize.
I am deeply honored to receive the Blue Planet Prize and especially gratified to receive it in 2015, the year that the UN member states will adopt the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Blue Planet Prize represents the commitment of the Asahi Glass Foundation to the wellbeing of the planet, and the prize is recognized worldwide for helping to spur the public’s awareness of the critical and urgent challenges of sustainable development. This year, the world’s governments, businesses, and civil society organizations have the opportunity to build upon and expand the scope of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), by adopting SDGs to end poverty, promote social inclusion, and protect the natural environment in all countries. I am profoundly thankful that the Blue Planet Prize Committee has recognized my work in furthering the MDGs and in promoting the new SDGs through the application of science, technology, institutional innovation, and moral purpose. Rigorous economic analysis and demonstrated solutions around the world show that sustainable development is feasible. The Blue Planet Prize serves as a great spur to action on behalf of humanity, and I am thrilled therefore to be its co-recipient this year.