Top award for world fisheries expert

22 March 2012

A University of Hull professor who has been actively involved in promoting sustainable inland fisheries and conservation all over the world has won the International Fisheries Science Prize.

Professor Ian CowxProfessor Ian Cowx, who is Director of the University of Hull International Fisheries Institute, has worked both in the UK, Europe and across the world to raise awareness, conserve fisheries and promote sustainable inland water ecosystems.

< Professor Ian Cowx

Projects have included developing management plans for sustainable fisheries on Lake Victoria, the second largest lake in the world; and assessing the potential impacts of damming on the fisheries of the Mekong River, a major food-source for many people living near the river.

Alongside this, he has trained more than 30 PhD and 300 MSc students from at least 80 countries, ensuring the skills and knowledge he has accumulated over the years is carried forward.

The combination of Professor Cowx’s ground-breaking project work with his educational legacy, has led to his receiving the International Fisheries Prize – a sort of lifetime achievement award for scientists in his field.

This prestigious award is only presented once every four years, and is only the second time someone has been recognised with the honour.

Professor Cowx said: “I am overwhelmed by this award. It’s a very important and prestigious prize that is only awarded once every four years, so to receive it is a tremendous honour.

“I very much see this as not an award for me; but as an award for all the people who have supported me through all these years to allow me to get involved in the work that I do.

“Hopefully, the projects I have been able to complete will continue to benefit not just the people affected across the world, but also my fellow staff and students at the Hull International Fisheries Institute.”

A spokesman for the American Fisheries Society, co-sponsors of the prize with the World Fisheries Congress, said: “Professor Cowx has had an outstanding career of diversified research and support of global conservation of fisheries resources.

“He has demonstrated a strong conservation ethic by promoting the importance of conserving global freshwater fish communities and fisheries with his involvement in fisheries conservation in multiple developing countries in addition to many projects in the UK and Europe.

“Professor Cowx’s contributions to both fisheries conservation and the advancement of fisheries science on a global scale have earned him the distinction as the recipient of the 2012 International Fisheries Science Prize.”

Professor Cowx will be presented with his award at the forthcoming World Fisheries Congress, which is being held in Edinburgh in May.

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