The head researcher of the Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services group at ITV, in Pará, Vera Lucia Imperatriz-Fonseca, was awarded the Scientific Merit prize at the 29th edition of CNPq’s Young Scientist Award.  The announcement was made on October 30th, in Brasilia, at the headquarters of the National Council for Scientific and Technological Development (CNPq). The awards will be handed out in December, in a ceremony at the Planalto Palace.

The Scientific Merit award recognizes professionals with outstanding performance in areas related to the award’s theme, which in 2018 addressed ‘Innovations for Nature Conservation and Social Transformation’. Professor and researcher Vera made her academic career at USP’s Ecology department, where she was supervised by Paulo Nogueira Neto, an important Brazilian conservationist. She followed the development of the Ecological Stations program and worked in research orientation in conservation areas. She is an expert on native bees and worked on the implementation of the International Pollinators Initiative at the Convention on Biological Diversity (2000) by co-authoring the São Paulo Declaration for Pollinators.

Recently, Vera also served as co-chair of the Pollinators, Pollination and Food Production Assessment of the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, appointed by the Brazilian government. He has mentored students and researchers at various levels, coordinated wide-ranging thematic projects, encouraged regional bee collections and native bee breeding, and been involved in NGOs, associations, and state and federal commissions for the conservation and defense of the environment. “The award gives importance to a theme that is present in our daily lives, as it deals with biodiversity and innovation. I have dedicated years of study to science and, therefore, winning this award is a unique experience”, Vera celebrates.

The Young Scientist Award contemplates the categories Master and Doctorate; University Education; High School; Scientific Merit; and Institutional Merit (for high school and university institutions with the highest number of qualified papers). In this edition, aiming to reinforce the importance of the search for innovations to conserve natural resources and consolidate social transformations, the Award proposed lines of research that address topics such as family farming, forest restoration, management technologies and creative economy, climate change, digital inclusion, among others. The announcement of the winners was broadcast live and is available on Futura’s website and social networks (www.futura.org.br).

*With information from CNPq