Ian Sterling

Conservationist, Wildlife Biologist

Ian Stirling is a Research Scientist Emeritus with Environment Canada and an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Biological Sciences, University of Alberta, Edmonton. He has done research on polar bears and polar seals (Arctic and Antarctic) for 50 years. His research interests include ecology, animal behavior, evolution, relationships between polar bears and seals, the biological importance of polynyas (stretches of ocean water surrounded by ice), and the conservation and management of polar marine mammals and ecosystems. His work has earned him the Canadian Northern Science Award and the National Conservation Award in the Special Achievement Category of the U.S. National Wildlife Federation. He was appointed as an Officer in the Order of Canada by the Governor General, and elected as a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, the primary scientific body of the country. In 2013 he was awarded the Norris Award for Lifetime Achievement from the Society for Marine Mammalogy and an Honorary Doctorate of Science from the Universities of Alberta and British Columbia. Ian participates in a number of national and international committees on polar bears and marine mammals and has authored or co-authored more than 300 scientific articles and written 5 books on bears and their ecology. Ian will travel as a Global Perspectives Guest Speaker.