Professor Jose Furtado was a Professor of Zoology and Coordinator of the Ecology Programme at the University of Malaya in the 1970s, and was seconded to the Commonwealth Secretariat to initiate a cooperative programme on Science for Technology for Development in the 1980s, and spent the 1990s designing training programmes for policy and decision-makers on environment, natural resources and sustainable development. Since his retirement, he has been a Visiting Professor for International Development at Imperial College’s Centre for Environmental (Technology) and Policy
He is a behavioural and natural resources ecologist, with experience in the taxonomy and ecology of freshwater insects, fish and fish parasites, in inland fisheries and aquaculture, and in the ecosystem dynamics of rivers, swamps (wetlands) and reservoirs, land-water interactions and integrated farming systems in the Asian tropics. After basic studies in Australia and Malaysia, he conducted postgraduate research in St. Andrews, Aberdeen and Glasgow, Leiden, Leningrad / St. Petersburg, Kyoto, Guangzhou and Changchun, and Waterloo (Canada).
He held the Chair of Zoology, and co-founded and coordinated the Ecology Degree program at the University of Malaya; was Science Adviser (with responsibility for technology, forests and the environment) to the Commonwealth Secretary-General, and Secretary of the Commonwealth Science Council responsible for initiating and launching a cooperative programme on ‘Science for Technology for Development’ with the late Sir John Kendrew, FRS, Nobel Laureate; and was Senior Environmental Specialist at the World Bank Institute (formerly the Economic Development Institute) responsible for initiating and launching the Bank’s environmental and natural resources sustainability training programme for policy and decision-makers in client countries.
He also has experience in World Bank investment projects in India and China; and has advised public institutions and governments, especially in selected countries of south-east Asia and the Commonwealth in science and technology, and in environmental and natural resources management. He has authored and edited seven books and more than 150 publications in taxonomy, ecology and resource management and sustainable development; and has supervised / advised or examined more than 100 MSc or PhD student theses. His achievements have been recognized by the World Academy of Arts and Science, the Royal Society of Arts, the University of Mauritius, and the Malaysian Scientific Association. He has been a Visiting Professor at the Centre for Environmental Policy, Imperial College London since 2000; and was Secretary-General of the World Academy of Art and Science (2004-2012).
Professor Jose Furtado pursues his interests in living spaces, aggression, ecological organization and governance; and continues mentoring and supervising graduate students in thesis research on environment and natural resources management, and on adaptation to sustainable futures. He has strong interests in community service, emergency relief, and organizational management; and has considerable country experience in east, south-east, central and south Asia and the South Pacific, in the Caribbean and central and south America, and in Anglophone sub-Saharan Africa.