M. Hosny El-Lakany

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M. Hosny El-Lakany, PhD’69

Global Citizenship Award

Dr. M. Hosny El Lakany has dedicated his life to pushing the environmental agenda on the world stage. During his four-decade career, he has not only conducted novel and award-winning research but also applied it to shape policies addressing some of the world’s most imperative issues. These include deforestation, land degradation, climate change, globalized trade and investment, forest governance, poverty reduction and natural resource conservation.

Hosny began his distinguished career at the University of Alexandria, Egypt, where he received his master’s degree in forestry in 1966. After completing a doctorate at UBC, it took just a few years of field work and research before he established himself as a leader in his profession. Recognizing his potential, the United Nations recruited Hosny as regional forester for the Near East and Northern Africa. A few rewarding years later he was promoted to head of the forestry department at the UN Food and Agricultural Organization. This position is referred to as “Chief Forester of the World” by insiders. His hard work led to the creation of policies and protocols that continue to protect the world in the face of climate change and environmental exploitation. He has advocated for the sustainable management and protection of the world’s forests, and the people that depend upon them, at countless international conferences, symposia and meetings of world leaders.

In addition to being a humanitarian and environmentalist, Hosny is an exceptional scientist. Research that he conducted decades ago is still being used to mitigate the effects of climate change. In the 1970s and 80s he focused on breeding highly resilient trees that are critical to the supply of firewood and shelter throughout arid, developing countries. In all, he has published more than 110 scientific papers and co-edited one book.

Hosny continues to share his immense wealth of expertise and knowledge and is frequently invited to speak at prestigious conferences. Dr El Lakany is currently an adjunct professor and director of the International program in the Faculty of Forestry.


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