Miguel Bastos Araújo (Brussels, 1969) is recognised as one of the world leaders in the study of climate change effects on biodiversity. He obtained a BSc in Geography and Regional Planning from NOVA University of Lisbon (1995), an MSc in Conservation (1996) and a PhD in Geography (2000), both from the University College London. He is a Research Professor of the Spanish Research Council (CSIC) at the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Madrid, and Professor Chair of Biodiversity at the University of Évora, while keeping a honorary position at the Imperial College London where he previously held a Professor Chair position in Integrative Biogeography. In the past, he also held faculty or research positions at the University of Oxford, University of Copenhagen, CNRS, and the Natural History Museum in London.
The academic contributions of Prof. Araújo can be appraised by his publications record (>250 publications), their overall impact (he has been listed as ‘highly cited‘ by Thomson Reuters every year between 2014 and 2020) and by the track record of the scientists he mentored (over 60 researchers and students).
Since 2014, Miguel Araújo has been Editor-in-Chief of of the influential scientific journal Ecography, previously having served as Deputy-Editor-in-Chief of the same journal, editor of the Journal of Biogeography, Conservation Letters, and Geography Compass. He has been also member of the editorial boards of Climate Change Responses, Frontiers of Biogeography, and “Natureza & Conservação”.
In recognition of his work, Prof. Araújo won several prestigious awards, including:
- Awarded honorary membership to the College of Biologists of Portugal (2020), for “his contributions to the development of biology”. First time given to a non-biologist individual.
- EEF (European Ecological Federation) Ernst Haeckel Prize (2019) to “honour senior scientists for their outstanding contribution to European ecological science”;
- Portuguese National Environmental Fernando Pereira Award (2019) given for notable contributions to environmental conservation;
- Pessoa Prize (2018) awarded to “Portuguese citizens whose contributions have been particularly relevant in the domains of arts, literature, or science”;
- Rey Jaime I Prize (2016) awarded to researchers who contributed “to the improvement of our ecological environment”;
- Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award (2014);
- IBS (International Biogeography Society) MacArthur & Wilson Award (2013), given to an individual “for notable, innovative contributions to biogeography at an early stage in their career”;
- GBIF (Global Information Biodiversity Facility) Ebbe Nielsen Prize (2013) awarded to researchers that “combine biosystematics and biodiversity informatics in an exciting and novel way”.
The impact of his research on broad scale biodiversity patterns and climate change appeals broadly, with several papers being regularly featured by the International press, as well as by scientific magazines, such as the National Geographic Magazine, Nature’ Reports on Climate Change, the New Scientist, Science’ New Focus, the Scientific American, and the Scientist.
He has been involved in a few high-profile and high-impact outreach initiatives. For example, he led and curated the current permanent exhibition on biodiversity, evolution and conservation of “Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales” in Madrid. He also curated the opening session of the 2020 European Green Week, as part of the celebrations of the 2020 Lisbon Green Capital of Europe Award.
He is Vice-President and Chairs the Expert’s Committee of the Gulbenkian Foundation Award for Humanity as an attempt to bolster and support people and projects making a difference in the fields of climate change mitigation and adaptation. He equally suported the BBVA Foundation in ranking nominations for FBBVA Biodiversity Conservation Awards, the Biophilia Award, and the Frontiers of Knowledge Award.
He was appointed member of the Portuguese National Council of the Environment and Sustainable Development (CNADS) by the Council of Ministers where he serves since 2019, and was made permanent member to the “Alto Consejo Consultivo de I+D+I” of the Presidency of the “Generalitat y del Gobierno Valenciano”, Spain.
Previously, He served as Deputy Director of the Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales in Madrid, leading the scientific training department, Vice-President of the International Biogeography Society, member of the scientific advisory board to the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (Natural and Environmental Sciences), and to the scientific committee of DIVERSITAS’ bioDISCOVERY programme. Miguel Araújo contributed to the 2007 4th IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change) Assessment Report, for which the IPCC shared the Nobel Peace Prize. He was also involved in several consultancies with governmental organisations, namely producing a report on the effects of climate change on European protected areas for the Council of Europe, and a study on the effects of climate changes on terrestrial Iberian biodiversity for the Spanish and Portuguese governments.
Professor Araújo has been principal researcher in more than 20 research projects, including five large European funded consortiums on climate change mitigation and adaptation, and one international FBBVA project to investigate climate change impacts on Latin America biodiversity. He was awarded €500,000 under the Rui Nabeiro Biodiversity Chair programme sponsored by Delta Coffee to promote higher education and high-level research in biodiversity and global change. Overall he contributed to raise more than €25.000.000 for research projects.