One of the scientific world's most respected environmental prizes

Gretchen Daily

The Volvo Environment Prize Foundation takes great pleasure in awarding its 2012 environment prize to Professor Gretchen Daily.

Gretchen Daily is one of the world’s outstanding scientists and researchers on ecosystem services, biogeography and the future dynamics of biodiversity change. She is the Bing Professor of Environmental Science at Stanford University. She also received her B.S., M.A., and Ph.D from Stanford University. She has conducted pioneering research on quantifying the production and value of ecosystem services; on harmonizing biodiversity conservation and agriculture; and on policies for integrating conservation and human development in major societal decisions.

Daily co-founded the Natural Capital Project (www.natural aimed at aligning economic factors and processes with conservation, and focusing on achieving this integration through practical research tools and policy demonstrations. Daily has worked extensively with private landowners, economists, lawyers, business people, and government agencies to incorporate environmental science into business practice and public policy. Her efforts have changed fundamentally research and policy on these subjects in Africa, Asia, Latin America, North America, and Oceania.

Her work has centered on three broad questions. First, given the projected intensification of human impacts on the biosphere, what kinds of species and ecosystems will exist over the coming decades and centuries? Second, which are most important and most need protection from both scientific and social standpoints? Third, what strategies will engender the deep global transformations needed to bring human impacts into balance with what the biosphere can reasonably sustain? Her most recent books are The New Economy of Nature, and Natural Capital: Theory and Practice of Mapping Ecosystem Services.

Daily has been widely honored for her contributions. She has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and has been awarded the Sophie Prize, the International Cosmos Prize, the Heinz Award, and the Midori Prize. She has served on numerous Boards, including the Beijer Institute of Ecological Economics and the Nature Conservancy.

The Volvo Environment Prize Foundation is deeply honored to choose Professor Gretchen Daily – a remarkable scientist with profound impact on policy and practice – for the 2012 Volvo Environment Prize.

Professor Gretchen Daily Laureate 2012, photo: Vern Evans