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Global Development Institute

Professor Bina Agarwal wins prestigious Balzan Prize

22 August 2017

Professor Agarwal was recognised in the gender studies category for her “heroic” work studying women’s contributions to agriculture in India.

Professor Bina Agarwal, who is based at the Global Development Institute, has been awarded the Balzan Prize for gender studies. The award recognises her ground-breaking research into women's contributions to agriculture in India.

Professor Marjan Schwegman, Utrecht University, commented that Professor Agarwal had received the award for“challenging established premises in economics and the social sciences by using an innovative gender perspective; for enhancing the visibility and empowerment of rural women in the Global South; for opening new intellectual and political pathways in key areas of gender and development”.   

The Balzan Prize is presented to people or organizations that have made outstanding achievements in humanities, natural sciences, culture. The prize has been awarded annual since 1978 with four varying fields chosen each year. Recipients of the award receive 750,000 Swiss francs, half of which must be used for research.  The Prizes will be presented during the award ceremony to be held in Berne on November 17. 

Professor Agarwal was awarded alongside two US scientists, whose work has contributed to creating immunological treatments for cancer, Belgian astrophysicist Michael Gillon, and Aleida and Jan Assmann, who were recognised for their work presenting collective memory.

The award continues an extraordinary 12 months for Professor Agarwal who has been awarded Order of Agricultural Merit by France and the Agropolis Foundation Louis Malassis International Scientific Prize.

In addition, she recently published a 3 volume compendium, Gender Challenges, of her ground breaking essays on agriculture, property rights, and the environment. 

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