Gordon Conway

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Gordon Conway
Born Gordon Richard Conway
Fields Agricultural Ecology
Institutions Imperial College London
Bangor University
University of California, Davis
The Rockefeller Foundation
Alma mater University of California, Davis
Thesis A Basic Model of Insect Reproduction and its Implications for Pest Control (1969)
Notable awards Fellow of the Royal Society

Sir Gordon Richard Conway KCMG FRS FRGS FREng[1] is an agricultural ecologist and former President of the Royal Geographical Society. He is currently Professor of International Development at Imperial College and Director of Agriculture for Impact, a grant funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which focuses on European support of agricultural development in Africa.


Conway was educated at the Bangor University, Cambridge University and the University of the West Indies in Trinidad. He completed his Doctor of Philosophy degree at the University of California, Davis.


In the early 1960s, working in Sabah, North Borneo, he became one of the pioneers of sustainable agriculture and integrated pest management. From 1970 to 1986, he was Professor of Environmental Technology at the Imperial College of Science and Technology in London. He then directed the sustainable agriculture program of the International Institute for Environment and Development in London before becoming Representative of the Ford Foundation in New Delhi from 1988 to 1992. He was Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sussex and Chair of the Institute of Development Studies.[2][3][4][5][6]

Conway was elected the eleventh President of The Rockefeller Foundation in April 1998,[7] elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 2004 and an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering in 2007.

He was made a Knight Commander of the Order of Saint Michael and Saint George in 2005. He is a Deputy Lieutenant for East Sussex. He was recently[when?] President of the Royal Geographical Society.

In June 2004 Conway was awarded an honorary degree from the Open University as Doctor of the University.[citation needed] In the same year he was elected as Fellow of the Royal Society[8]

In 2008, he was appointed a Honorary Fellow[9] of the Royal Academy of Engineering.[10]

Conway took up his appointment as the UK Department for International Development’s Chief Scientific Adviser in January 2005.[11][12][13][14][15]

He was listed on The 2005 Global Intellectuals Poll and was president of the Royal Geographical Society.[16]

Conway now works at Imperial College London and heads the Bill & Melinda Gates funded project Agriculture for Impact looking into ways to increase and enhance agricultural development for smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa.


He has authored:

  • Unwelcome Harvest: agriculture and pollution (Earthscan, Island Press) ISBN 1-85383-036-4
  • The Doubly Green Revolution: Food for all in the 21st century (Penguin and University Press, Cornell) ISBN 0-8014-8610-6
  • Islamophobia: a challenge for us all (The Runnymede Trust) ISBN 0-902397-98-2.

He co-authored:


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