I am delighted to announce that distinguished scientist Professor Graham Farquhar AO has today won the Kyoto Prize.
To receive the Kyoto Prize is a huge honour and Graham is the first Australian to win the award in its 32-year history. It is the most prestigious international accolade for fields not traditionally recognised for Nobel Prizes.
Graham has been acknowledged in the Biological Sciences category - all the more special as it is only given once every four years - for his life's work in plant biophysics and photosynthesis.
He now joins Kyoto Prize laureates including primatologist Jane Goodall, philosopher Noam Chomsky and "the father of Artificial Intelligence" John McCarthy.
This award is another acknowledgment of the important work Graham is doing to help feed the world in a changing climate.
His research into plant biophysics has been used to understand cells, whole plants and forests, and to create new water-efficient wheat varieties.
One of the important attributes of receiving a Kyoto Prize is the person's contribution to advancing the betterment of mankind. I'm proud that we have a person of Graham's calibre working at ANU, tackling some of the most profound challenges facing humanity and the environment.
This afternoon I joined with some of Graham's Research School of Biology colleagues to toast his success. No doubt this will be the first of many parties celebrating his achievement.
On behalf of the whole ANU community, I congratulate Graham on this remarkable award.