The first winners of the Professor Huw Taylor Prize – named in honour of the late Emeritus Professor of Microbial Ecology at the University of Brighton – were announced at a ceremony in Vienna.
The prize, which recognises ‘exceptional scientific contribution to provide water or sanitation solutions in emergency and developing settings’, was launched at the International Water Association’s 20th biannual Health-Related Water Microbiology (HRWM) symposium.
There were two winners of the inaugural award: Professor Taylor himself – in recognition of his exceptional contribution to the health-related water microbiology science field and to the HRWM specialist group – and Imperial College London research student Laura Braun.
Laura was honoured for her research into the removal of parasitic worms responsible for schistosomiasis using different low-cost water treatment methods in Ethiopia and Tanzania.
Dr James Ebdon of the University of Brighton’s School of Environment and Technology, who worked with Professor Taylor for many years, accepted the prize on behalf of his family, friends and colleagues at the University.
The two awards were presented by Professor Gertjan Medema, Chair of the IAW HRWM Specialist Group.
Dr Ebdon said: “This award was unanimously voted for by the HRWM committee and is testament to not only how far-reaching the research Huw established was (and continues to be), but how well-regarded he was by the international scientific community.”
Dr Ebdon also ensured that four of Professor Taylor’s former research students from Africa and South America were able to attend the event and present their research findings into drinking water protection in rural Brazil, seasonal variation of viruses in UK wastewater, rotavirus presence in Nigerian surface waters and prevention of childhood diarrhoea in rural Kenya.
This reunion of University of Brighton researchers was made possible due to the generosity of donors to the Professor Huw Taylor Memorial Fund
The next Prof Huw Taylor Prize will be awarded in Darwin, Australia in 2021. Further details of Professor Huw Taylor’s lifesaving work can be found here on the International Water Association website.
You can find out more about the late Professor of Microbial Ecology, Huw Taylor, on the University of Brighton’s academic staff pages.