The President of the Catalan Government, Artur Mas announced British anthropologist and primatologist Jane Goodall as this year’s winner of the Premi Internacional Catalunya (Catalonia International Prize) in recognition of her “long career and contribution” to scientific research and the field of environmental conservation. With over fifty years of research in Tanzania’s Gombe Stream National Park, Dr. Goodall is considered one of the most important experts in animal behaviour and her ground-breaking work with chimpanzees has contributed immeasurably to our understanding of animal behaviours and the importance of compassion for all species.
The announcement was made by President Mas after a unanimous decision was reached by an independent jury of high-profile professionals from Catalonia and abroad. The jury selected her from a list of 152 candidates from over 50 different countries for her “empirical and committed work” in the study of the animal kingdom. Furthermore, the jury highlighted “her significant scientific contribution, which has given us a better understanding of human nature, culture and behaviour”. The jury also noted that, in demonstrating that these aspects are not independent phenomena, Goodall had also encouraged “solidarity among living beings, sustainability within our environment and peace among men and women”.
The Premi Internacional Catalunya is awarded annually by the Generalitat to distinguish those whom have made a significant contribution to the development of cultural, scientific, or human values around the world. Past recipients of the Premi include Aung San Suu Kyi, Jimmy Carter, Karl Popper, Jacques Delors, Amartya Sen, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Malala Yousafzai.
Jane Goodall will receive the award in Barcelona on July 27th in a ceremony chaired by President Mas at the Palau de la Generalitat.