Honorary Fellows of IEPSL
Deshamanya Professor Mohan Munasinghe
Prof. Mohan Munasinghe earned BA (Hons.) and MA degrees in Engineering from Cambridge University, UK; the SM and Professional EE degrees in Electrical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA; the PhD degree in Solid State Physics from McGill University, Canada; and the MA degree in Development Economics from Concordia University, Canada. He has also received several honorary doctorates (honoris causa). He was Vice Chair of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC-AR4), who shared the 2007 Nobel Prize for Peace, and more recently received the 2021 Blue Planet Prize, also called the “environmental Nobel Prize”. The Heads of five countries, including Bangladesh, Brazil, Dominican Republic, France, and Sri Lanka, have presented highest national awards to him.
Prof. Munasinghe is the author of over 120 scholarly books, and about four hundred technical papers in well-known scientific journals — on climate change, disasters, environment, sustainable development, energy, transport, urban infrastructure, water resources, telecommunications, and sustainable consumption and production.
Presently, he is Founder Chairman, Munasinghe Institute for Development (MIND) and MIND Group, Colombo; Chairman, Presidential Expert Commission (PEC) on Sustainable Sri Lanka 2030 Vision and Strategic Path; Distinguished Guest Professor at Peking University, China; and Honorary Senior Advisor to the Government of Sri Lanka. Previously, he was Senior Advisor/Manager, World Bank, Wash. DC, covering sustainable development, environmental policy, water, energy and transport; Chancellor, International Water Academy, Oslo; and Director-General, Sustainable Consumption Institute, University of Manchester.
After working over 50 years in the international arena, he is recognized as a leading world authority on sustainable development, economics, energy and environment. His research and applications have contributed to two major international achievements in 2015 – the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and the UNFCCC COP21 Paris Agreement on climate change. He is especially known for trans-disciplinary thinking, having developed the internationally recognized, widely taught and applied discipline of Sustainomics, launched at the 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. In 2010, he proposed the widely acclaimed new idea of Millennium Consumption Goals (MCGs) at the United Nations, to complement the Millennium Development Goals.
Prof. Munasinghe has won a number of international prizes and honours for public service, research and applications. Most notably, he shared the 2007 Nobel Prize for Peace (as Vice Chair, IPCC-AR4), for his seminal work on integrating global climate change policies into sustainable development strategy, and received the 2021 Blue Planet prize for exceptional contributions to the global environment and sustainability.
In 2019, the President of Sri Lanka awarded him the highest national honour of Deshamanya for highly meritorious contributions to Sri Lanka and the world. In 2016, the President of Sri Lanka presented him the outstanding lifetime achievement award for exceptional contributions to energy, climate change and sustainable development in Sri Lanka and worldwide. In 2016, he received the top world energy award from the Energy Globe Foundation in Vienna, for outstanding work on energy, sustainable development and climate change.
He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Science (D.Sc. – Honoris Causa) in 2013, by the Sabaragamuwa University of Sri Lanka, for exceptional global academic and research contribution in the fields of sustainable development, climate change, economics, energy and environment. He was felicitated by the Sri Lanka government in 2008, for becoming the first Sri Lankan to share the prestigious Nobel Prize. In 2008, he also received a special award for exceptional contributions to environment and sustainable development and bringing great honour to Sri Lanka, from the Royal Commonwealth Society and Central Environment Authority of Sri Lanka. In 2007, he received the Sarvodaya (Sri Lanka) Award for outstanding contributions to Humanity, Peace and Development.
He has taught university courses for the past 40 years, on climate change, energy, sustainable development nationally and internationally. He has organized and conducted international training seminars on climate change, sustainable development, environment, economics, energy, transport, water resources, and information technology, in various parts of the world, for thousands of senior officials, researchers and students from many countries.
The Council of the Institute of Environmental Professionals Sri Lanka (IEPSL), considering Prof Munasinghe’s leadership and immense contributions to the conservation and management of the environment, commitment to sustainable development and advocacy for green economic growth at national as well as the global levels, at its meeting held on 11th January 2022, decided to honour him with the highest award at its disposal, the Honorary Fellowship of the Institute, which is a lifetime award.