Announcements

24 September 2020
Announcing the Recipients of the 2020 World Sustainability Award and Emerging Sustainability Leader Award

BASEL, Switzerland, Sept. 16, 2020 — The recipients of the World Sustainability Award and Emerging Sustainability Leader Award are chosen from nominees by a Selection Committee consisting of seven members, including permanent members Dr. Shu-Kun Lin, founder and President of MDPI and founder and chairman of the MDPI Sustainability Foundation, and Prof. Dr. Ed Constable, former Vice President for Research of the University of Basel.

The five non-permanent members of the selection committee consist of a university professor from the Scientific Board of the journal Sustainability, a university professor from the university hosting the respective World Sustainability Forum, and a representative from an intergovernmental organization, civic society, and the business sector.

Nominees for the World Sustainability Award may be individual researchers or groups of researchers, whereas the nominees for the Emerging Sustainability Leader Award are individual researchers aged 40 or under at the time of the submission deadline. The awardees must have made, and continue to make, a unique and outstanding academic or societal contribution to sustainability in general or to a sustainability-relevant issue in particular.

The World Sustainability Award and the Emerging Sustainability Leader Award are granted according to merit and impact, without any discrimination based on gender, race, religion, nationality, or political affiliation. The recipients are informed no later than two months before the upcoming World Sustainability Forum, whereby Dr. Shu-Kun Lin coordinates the selection procedure.

About the World Sustainability Award

The World Sustainability Award was established in 2017 by the MDPI Sustainability Foundation to encourage new initiatives and developments in sustainability and is conferred to individual researchers or research teams who have made an outstanding academic or societal contribution to sustainability in general, or to a sustainability-relevant issue in particular.

The first award was made jointly to Professor Dr. Jeffrey Sachs, renowned economics professor, global leader in sustainable development, and director of the Center for Sustainable Development at Columbia University and Dr. Sonia Ehrlich Sachs, paediatrician, public health specialist and research scholar at the Earth Institute, Columbia University.

The second World Sustainability Award was made jointly to Dr. Mathis Wackernagel, president of the Global Footprint Network and Dr. Zhifu Mi, University College London. Since 1997, Mathis Wackernagel has advanced the Ecological Footprint for countries through the National Footprint Accounts, which continue to be the world’s only comprehensive metric able to compare human demand on nature to what the planet can renew. They inform about countries’ exposure to core sustainability challenges, including climate change and resource constraints. The Global Footprint Network reaches over 3 billion media impressions ever year with its Earth Overshoot Day, which marks the date when humanity has used more from nature than the earth can renew in the entire year. Dr. Zhifu Mi is a lecturer at University College London and co-developer of the China Emission Accounts and Datasets, which provides the most up-to-date, comparable, verifiable, and free emission-accounting inventories of China.

Dr. Michael E. Mann and Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha are the joint recipients of the 2020 World Sustainability Award.

“We are thrilled to recognize the work of Dr. Chadha Santuccione and Dr. Mann to add their names to the list of eminent awardees who champion sustainable development” said Prof. Dr. Ed Constable, former Vice President for Research of the University of Basel and co-chair of the Award Selection Committee.

To find out more, visit https://wsforum.org/instructions#awardees


About Prof. Dr. Michael E. Mann

Dr. Michael Mann is Distinguished Professor of Atmospheric Science and Director of the Earth System Science Center at Pennsylvania State University. His research focuses on climate science and climate change. He was selected by Scientific American as one of the fifty leading visionaries in science and technology in 2002, was awarded the Hans Oeschger Medal of the European Geophysical Union in 2012 and the National Conservation Achievement Award of the NWF in 2013. He made Bloomberg News' list of the fifty most influential people in 2013. In 2014, he received the Friend of the Planet Award from the National Center for Science Education. He received the Stephen H. Schneider Award for Outstanding Climate Science Communication from Climate One in 2017, the Award for Public Engagement with Science from the AAAS in 2018, and the Climate Communication Prize from the American Geophysical Union in 2018. In 2019, he received the Tyler Prize for Environmental Achievement.

He is a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union, American Meteorological Society, Geological Society of America, American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry. He is co-founder of the award-winning science website RealClimate.org, author of more than 200 peer-reviewed and edited publications, numerous op-eds and commentaries, and four books: Dire Predictions, The Hockey Stick and the Climate Wars, The Madhouse Effect, and The Tantrum that Saved the World. His fifth, forthcoming book “The New Climate War” is due to be released January 2021.

About Dr. med. Antonella Santuccione Chadha


Dr. Antonella Santuccione Chadha is a medical doctor with expertise in clinical pathology, neuroscience, and psychiatric disorders. She is head of stakeholder engagement for Alzheimer’s disease at Biogen. She is co-founder and CEO of the non-profit organization “Women’s Brain Project”, which is addressing the influence of sex and gender on mental and brain diseases. As a medical doctor, Antonella has decades of experience in preclinical research, patient treatment, clinical development, medical affairs, and setting up the international regulatory framework for Alzheimer’s disease. Always focused on solving the puzzles related to Alzheimer’s and other psychiatric diseases, she has worked with Swissmedic, Roche, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, several European universities, the EU Commission Directorate for Health and Food Safety, the World Health Organization, the CEO and several Alzheimer’s’ disease Organizations.

In 2018 and 2019, she was among the top 100 Women in Business in Switzerland and in 2019 she was elected Woman of the Year in Switzerland by the Magazine "Women in Business". She is the Vice-president of Euresearch and acts as a scientific advisor for several start-ups and scientific institutions. Dr. Santuccione Chadha is keenly interested in removing bias when developing solutions for mental and neurological diseases to achieve precision medicines. She is advocating and involved in the creation of an Institute for sex and gender precision medicine in Switzerland.

About the Emerging Sustainability Leader Award

Recipients of the Emerging Sustainability Leader Award are individual researchers aged 40 or under at the time of the submission deadline. Awardees must have made, and continue to make, a unique and outstanding academic or societal contribution to sustainability in general or to a sustainability-relevant issue in particular.

The joint recipients of the 2020 Emerging Sustainability Leader Award are Dr. Jing Meng and Dr. Natalia Mykhaylova.

About Dr. Jing Meng

Dr. Jing Meng is a Lecturer at The Bartlett School of Construction and Project Management, University College London (UCL), and a fellow of the Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy, and Natural Resource Governance at the University of Cambridge. Her research focus is on sustainable production and consumption, including theories and modeling of environmental economics, climate change and air pollution policies, energy decarbonization, and trade policies. Jing received her Ph.D. degree in Environmental Geography from Peking University. Jing's research focuses on the impact of international trade on the distribution, climate, and health impacts of black carbon. Jing also holds a bachelor’s degree in Building Environment and Energy Engineering from Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Jing is an associate editor of the Journal of Cleaner Production and a guest editor of the Journal of Environmental Management and Sustainability.

About Dr. Natalia Mykhaylova

Natalia Mykhaylova has a background in engineering, chemistry, and design. Natalia is passionate about the environmental sustainability field. Her Ph.D. work involved the development of novel sensor devices and adaptable wireless networks for air pollution monitoring and smart city applications. She founded four ventures and three non-profit initiatives. She provided consulting services to community organizations working with environmental data sources and conducted community air pollution research projects. She also developed a software solution that makes use of traffic data to reduce city congestion and the associated carbon emissions, winner of Climate Hack-To-Action as well as Climathon. She led the development of a modular solution to add more green space to the impermeable city core as well as manage stormwater run-off in dense urban environments, winner of Green Infrastructure Hack-a-thon. She co-founded Cleanopy Inc. and has developed a unique portable device for children that offers continuous indoor and outdoor protection from air pollution.

More recently, Natalia Mykhaylova is a founder and CEO of WeavAir, which develops sensor modules that improve the indoor air quality and energy efficiency of HVAC systems. She leads WeavAir teams in North America and Asia and the company received 15 awards in North America, Asia, and Europe. The company was incorporated in Canada and Korea and has received many awards and a large amount of interest in North America, Asia, and Europe.

About the World Sustainability Award

The World Sustainability Award is funded by the MDPI Sustainability Foundation to encourage new initiatives and developments in sustainability with the ultimate aim of fostering the transfer from sustainability research to sustainable practices and societies.

The prize is USD 100,000, to be shared between the awardees.

To view the Award Ceremony and presentation from each recipient, please visit: https://youtu.be/gVzppr2uoRg.

To find out more, please visit https://wsforum.org/instructions.

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