Biodiversity Essential to APEC Economies

Celebrating a decade of honoring young scientists, APEC is now accepting nominations for the 2020 APEC Science Prize for Innovation, Research and Education, or ASPIRE, which spotlights cross-border innovations led by scientists in the region.

APEC 2020 host economy Malaysia has declared this year’s theme as ‘Biodiversity for a Prosperous Economy’. The 2020 ASPIRE Prize will be awarded to scientific research focused on biodiversity and how it contributes to local livelihoods, traditional and modern medicines, and economic development.

“Biodiversity underpins the health of our economies. Innovative research can contribute towards sustainable development by promoting best practices in waste management, food security and energy use,” said Yeo Bee Yin, Malaysia’s Minister of Energy, Science, Technology, Environment, and Climate Change.

Since its establishment in 2011, the ASPIRE prize has recognized young scientists addressing issues ranging from food security to sustainable ocean management and strengthening science and technology networks. The winning entry will receive US $25,000.

Each APEC economy may nominate one individual, who must be from the region and under 40 years of age. The impact of their work will be judged on their excellence in research and cross-border collaboration with peers from other APEC economies. Relevant academic disciplines include biology, chemistry, environmental science, and physics, among others.

“An enhanced knowledge and understanding of the complex relationships between biodiversity, global health, and development will lead to greater economic prosperity,” says Mr. Daniel Dufour, Chair of the APEC Policy Partnership for Science, Technology, and Innovation, which administers the annual ASPIRE Prize. “Our economies are on the cusp of a pivotal change – we have before us an opportunity to come together to showcase research that may help us solve the significant challenges ahead.”  

To be awarded in Malaysia in August 2020, the prize is co-sponsored by Wiley and Elsevier, renowned publishers of scholarly scientific knowledge.

“Biodiversity is essential for our collective future. This year, the ASPIRE Prize will highlight pioneering research that reduces environmental risks and promotes sustainability. It is an honor to support the high caliber of work within APEC,” said Brian Napack, Wiley’s CEO.

“We could not be more proud to be part of the ASPIRE Prize’s decade of encouraging innovation that advances inclusive and sustainable growth,” said Youngsuk “Y.S.” Chi , Chairman of Elsevier. “We look forward to seeing more smart solutions for shared prosperity from the region’s brilliant research community.”