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Jun 24, 2022

Inspiration and Hope: An Event to Celebrate Jane Goodall (video)

At this event, honoring Templeton Prize Laureate, a new initiative to identify and fund the “next Jane Goodalls” was announced.

By Templeton Staff

An event held at The Natural History Museum in London in May 2022 celebrated 2021 Templeton Prize Laureate, Dr. Jane Goodall. Dr. Goodall gave a keynote lecture and spoke in conversation with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour at her first public appearance since the COVID pandemic.

Several special guests were in attendance, including Heather Templeton Dill, President of the John Templeton Foundation, Andrew Serazin, President of the Templeton World Charity Foundation, and Michael Ulica, President and COO of the National Geographic Society. The Templeton Prize specifically celebrates Dr. Goodall’s scientific and spiritual curiosity, and rewards her unrelenting effort to connect humanity to a greater purpose. “Her observations have profoundly altered the world’s view of animal intelligence and enriched our understanding of humanity in a way that is both humbling and exalting, said Heather Templeton Dill, president of the John Templeton Foundation. “Ultimately, her work exemplifies the kind of humility, spiritual curiosity, and discovery that my grandfather, John Templeton, wrote and spoke about during his life.”

During this event, it was announced that National Geographic Society has received a 2.7 million USD grant to work with Templeton World Charity Foundation to identify and support three rising scientists in honor of Jane Goodall.

Templeton World Charity Foundation supports a diverse group of researchers to discover new knowledge, create new tools and launch new innovations that make a lasting impact on human flourishing. Andrew Serazin, President of the Foundation, remarks that "For us [at TWCF], flourishing requires listening, requires awe and wonder. It requires humility. It requires gratitude, and the commitment to truth." Leading up to the announcement of TWCF and National Geographic Society's new initiative to find and fund the "next Jane Goodalls," Serazin noted that "Dr. Jane Goodall embodies all of these virtues." He continued: "Hers is a legacy that we aim to amplify in the next generation of scientists, just as Louis Leakey mentored Jane and Dian Fossey and Biruté Galdikas. So it's an understatement for us to say that Jane continues to be an inspiration for many around the world. Her impact —  specifically in the field of ethology and natural history, including so many scholars that we support — knows no bounds. Inspired by her field studies showing that tool use in primates was possible, researchers have made many, many other astonishing discoveries such as self-identity in dolphins, the rudiments of memory in plants or play in birds. Moreover, this work helps us expand outward from our limited small human perspective to find other ways of knowing and flourishing that will, in turn, inform our own lives. Importantly, these observations also add a sense of urgency and importance to the devastating loss of biodiversity on our planet."

Watch the above video of the event in full to hear from Jane Goodall, and to learn more about finding and funding the "next Jane Goodalls."

About the Templeton Prize
Established in 1972, the Templeton Prize is one of the world’s largest annual individual awards. It is given to honor individuals whose exemplary achievements advance Sir John Templeton’s philanthropic vision: harnessing the power of the sciences to explore the deepest questions of the universe and humankind’s place and purpose within it. Currently valued at 1.1 million British pounds, the award is adjusted periodically so it always exceeds the value of the Nobel Prize. Winners have come from all faiths and geographies, and have included Nobel Prize winners, philosophers, theoretical physicists, and one canonized saint. The Templeton Prize is awarded by the three Templeton philanthropies: the John Templeton Foundation, based in West Conshohocken, Pennsylvania, and by Templeton World Charity Foundation and Templeton Religion Trust, based in Nassau, The Bahamas.

About Templeton World Charity Foundation
Templeton World Charity Foundation, established by Sir John Templeton in 1996, supports a diverse group of researchers to discover new knowledge, develop new tools, and launch new innovations that make a lasting impact on human flourishing. We support projects that will form a robust pipeline of innovations aimed at improving key aspects of human flourishing. Our strategy is not just about making interesting discoveries but also about translating those discoveries into practices that can be rigorously tested and launched for the benefit of individuals and communities.

About National Geographic Society
The National Geographic Society is a global nonprofit organization that uses the power of science, exploration, education and storytelling to illuminate and protect the wonder of our world. Since 1888, National Geographic has pushed the boundaries of exploration, investing in bold people and transformative ideas, providing more than 15,000 grants for work across all seven continents, reaching 3 million students each year through education offerings, and engaging audiences around the globe through signature experiences, stories and content.