Emperor Akihito to be named honorary member of Uppsala University

21 May 2007

The emperor of Japan, Akihito, will be declared an honorary member of Uppsala University in connection with the Linnaeus Tercentenary at University Hall on May 23. The University is honoring the emperor for his interest in the Linnaean heritage, his great commitment to science and the environment, and for his scientific achievements.

“I am delighted as vice-chancellor to be able to declare His Majesty the Emperor Akihito an honorary member during his visit to our University,” says Uppsala University Vice-Chancellor Anders Hallberg. Emperor Akihito is a recognized authority in the field of science. He has studied fish of the Gobiidae family (gobies) and published several articles on the subject, including one in Science, in which he emphasizes the ancient contacts between Japanese and Swedish research. The emperor has also shown an avid interest in the Linnaean legacy and has been an honorary member of the Linnean Society of London since 1986. Uppsala University inducts as honorary members individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the University, in the form of donations or notable efforts in the public or private spheres. King Carl XVI Gustaf was proclaimed the University’s first honorary member when the distinction was instituted in 1990. Other honorary members at present are Anders Wall and Peter Wallenberg, both from the business community. The Tercentenary Week in celebration of Carl Linnaeus’ 300th birthday is now under way in Uppsala. For a press program and other information, please see http://www.linnaeus2007.se/press and http://www.uu.se/english