Ernst Mayr

1983 Balzan Prize for Zoology

For his fundamental contributions to the contemporary study of evolution based on research in the field of zoology. For his criticism of the concept of species, his analysis of natural selection and the processes of formation of species and for his penetrating study of the impact of the Darwinian revolution on modern thought.

Ernst Mayr was born in Kempten, Germany, on July 5, 1904 (†2005); he is U.S. citizen;

Assistant Curator at the Museum of Zoology of the University of Berlin (1926-32);

then Associate Curator and Curator of the Whitney-Rothschild Collection at the American Museum of Natural History of New York;

member of the teaching staff of Harvard University since 1953;

Director of the Museum of Comparative Zoology (1961-1970);

Professor Emeritus since 1975;

Lecturer and Visiting Professor at 11 American universities, at the University of Pavia, at the Collège de France and the German universities of Tübingen and Würzburg;

member of not less than 50 academies and associations throughout the world;

Ph.D. « honoris causa » from the Universities of Uppsala, Oxford, Munich, the Sorbonne, Harvard, Cambridge and Guelph;

founder of the journal Evolution.

In addition to 507 articles, Mayr is the author of the following books:

— List of New Guinea Birds (1941);

— Systematics and the Origin of Species (1942);

— Birds of the Southwest Pacific (1945);

— Birds of the Philippines (1946);

— Genetics, Paleontology and Evolution (1949);

— Methods and Principles of Systematic Zoology (1953);

— The Species Problem (1957);

— Animal Species and Evolution (1963);

— Principles of Systematic Zoology (1969);

— Populations, Species, and Evolution (1970);

— Evolution and the Diversity of Life (1976);

— Evolution und die Vielfalt des Lebens (1979);

— The Evolutionary Synthesis (1980);

— La biologie de l’évolution (1981);

— The Growth of Biological Thought (1982).

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