The Patron's Medal is one of two Royal Medals approved by Her Majesty the Queen, and are among the highest honours of their kind in the world. Previous recipients include Sir David Attenborough, Professor Diana Liverman (former ECI director) and Lindsey Hilsum.
The medals are given each year to individuals in recognition for their extraordinary achievement in geographical research, fieldwork and teaching, photography, and public engagement.
The 2018 Patron’s Medal has been awarded to Professor Yadvinder Malhi, Jackson Senior Research Fellow at the Environmental Change Institute and Oriel College, for his world leading studies on the impact of climate change on tropical ecosystems. Not only a world leading researcher, Professor Yadvinder Malhi is also an inspiring teacher and public speaker. As pointed out by Nicholas Crane: 'Yadvinder has been the catalyst for many others to become involved in rainforest research.'
Professor Yadvinder Malhi said: 'I am delighted and humbled to be awarded the Patron’s Medal, not only for myself but also in recognition of the many colleagues and students across the world, and especially in the tropics, with whom I have worked.'
Among other recipients, sculptor, photographer and filmmaker Andy Goldsworthy received the Cherry Kearton Medal and Award for his sculptural works that inspire reflection on changing environments.