First-ever Indonesian scientist receives the prestigious Honorary Doctorate from the University of Helsinki

Daniel Murdiyarso of CIFOR-ICRAF becomes the first-ever Indonesian scientist to receive the prestigious Honorary Doctorate from the University of Helsinki
Bogor, Indonesia - Daniel Murdiyarso, Principal Scientist at the Center for International Forestry Research and World Agroforestry (CIFOR-ICRAF), will be bestowed with the honorary degree of Doctor Honoris Causa by the University of Helsinki, the oldest and largest university in Finland this Friday June 17.

Murdiyarso was selected as one of the eight scientists worldwide to be granted this prestigious award. The University of Helsinki is organizing four conferment ceremonies this spring: the doctoral conferment ceremony of the Faculty of Medicine, as well as the master’s and doctoral conferment ceremonies of the Faculty of Philosophy, the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry and the Faculty of Social Sciences. As per tradition, the title of “doctor honoris causa”, the University’s highest recognition, will also be awarded to several individuals in connection with the conferment ceremonies. In the ceremonies to be held this year, a total of 30 distinguished scholars from around the world will be conferred as honorary doctors.

Murdiyarso, the only Indonesian scientist to ever receive this honorary degree, has been working in the agriculture and forestry field for more than 30 years. Currently, he is one of the principal scientists at CIFOR-ICRAF and a professor at the Department of Geophysics and Meteorology at the Bogor Institute of Agriculture (FMIPA - IPB) in Indonesia.

He has significantly contributed to the development of science and technology in Indonesia. From 2000-2002, he served as the Deputy Minister of Environment for the Government of Indonesia, during which he was also the National Focal Point of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). He played an important role in the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), serving as the Convening Lead Author of the IPCC Third Assessment Report and the IPCC Special Report on Land-use, Land-use Change and Forestry.

Over the past two decades, Murdiyarso has published more than 100 research works related to land-use change and biogeochemical cycles, climate change mitigation and adaptation. He received his degree in Forestry from Bogor Agricultural University (IPB), Indonesia. In 1985, he received a Ph.D. from the Department of Meteorology at the University of Reading, U.K. Throughout his career, he has received many prestigious awards, including the Ahmad Bakrie Award (2010), the Sarwono-LIPI Award (2018), and the Habibie Prize (2020). Since 2002, Murdiyarso has been an active member of the Indonesian Academy of Sciences.

In regard to the 2022 Doctor Honoris Causa degree awarded by the University of Helsinki, Murdiyarso said: “I am deeply grateful. This achievement was made possible by the support and collaboration of my colleagues at CIFOR-ICRAF and IPB, as well as the students who were involved with the research of land-use change and biogeochemical cycles, climate change mitigation and adaptation. Receiving this honorary degree motivates me to continue conducting my research, so that I can contribute to a better future for our planet.”

  • Leona Liu, Global Head of Outreach and Engagement, CIFOR-ICRAF, [email protected]
  • Budhy Kristanty, Regional Head of Media Relations, Asia-Pacific, CIFOR-ICRAF [email protected]