Ghillean Prance is President of the Institute of Biology, Science Director of the Eden Project (Cornwall), Visiting Professor, Reading University, McBryde Professor of Botany, National Tropical Botanical Garden, and was, formerly, Director, Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew.
A plant taxonomist, Prance has explored the Amazon rainforest over the past 30 years, conducting fieldwork and botanical exploration and he has lived with no less than 16 indian tribes. He has written 13 books, edited several more and published more than 300 papers on plant systematics, plant ecology, ethnobotany and conservation. His outstanding personal contributions to these scientific developments have been rewarded by many honours, including the Distinguished Service Award of the New York Botanical Garden, the Linnean Medal for Botany, the Patron’s Medal of the Royal Geographic Society, the International Cosmos Prize for his environmental work in the Amazon, the Royal Horticultural Society’s Victoria Medal of Honour, and honorary degrees at 11 universities in Europe and the Americas. He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society in 1993 and received a knighthood in 1995. Additional perspectives on his life and research can be found in a biography that appeared a few years ago: Langmead, C. 1995. A Passion for Plants: from the Rainforest of Brazil to Kew Gardens. Oxford, Lion Publishing.