Professor honoured for outstanding contribution to agricultural development

  • Date

    Fri 27 Jan 23

Professor Jules Pretty

University of Essex Professor of Environment and Society Jules Pretty has been honoured for his outstanding contribution to agricultural development.

The Tropical Agriculture Association (TAA) has named Professor Pretty as Development Agriculturalist of the Year 2022 – an award which recognises outstanding contributions to agricultural development over the course of a career, with a focus on improving food production, food security, livelihoods and environmental sustainability in developing countries.

The TAA bestowed the award on Professor Pretty “for innovation in understanding the relationships between people and natural resources determining the sustainability of agriculture, agroecosystems and food systems”.

Professor Pretty, who is Director of the Centre for Public and Policy Engagement at Essex, said: “The Tropical Agriculture Association is a prestigious grouping of agricultural scientists and activists from all regions of the world. It was a great pleasure and honour to receive this lifetime award from distinguished peers in the UK and overseas.”

A distinguished and award-winning author, Professor Pretty has also been recognised as among the world’s most cited scholars, collaborating with researchers around the world.

Professor Pretty was one of the first to popularise the term regenerative agriculture, and then went on to propose the concept of sustainable intensification - the idea of new intensive ways of farming at the same time as protecting and improving the environment. His research has shown that sustainable intensification not only increases farm productivity but can also support our valuable ecosystems.

This work has benefited policy makers, farmers, ecosystems and businesses in the United Nations’ (UN) 194 member states, across 130 countries worldwide, by shaping the development of a ground-breaking UN agriculture food systems framework and influencing the recommendations of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization and Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services on agricultural development policy.