2018 Adam Smith Prize Awarded to UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner
Guided by the maxim “People will do anything for money, even the right thing”, the German Forum Ökologisch-Soziale Marktwirtschaft - FOES - awards the Adam Smith Prize for Environmental Economic Policy each year for distinguished policy leadership and/or research that harnesses market tools and forces for the environment and sustainability. This year’s prize was given to UNDP Administrator Achim Steiner, who accepted the award today in Berlin.
“As Adam Smith wrote over 200 years ago, aligning public and private interests can be a powerful mechanism to bring about social good,” said Steiner when he accepted the prize. “I hope the FOES Adam Smith award will continue to raise greater awareness of both the urgency and the opportunity to transform our economies to address the 21st century challenges of sustainability and equity. Markets are not only an economic construct but also an expression of public choice which reflect our cultural and normative values. Societies thrive when public policy and effective markets are aligned”.
Steiner has had an extensive career in sustainable development and environmental policy, leading both the International Union for Conservation of Nature and the United Nations Environment Programme before being appointed as Director of the Oxford Martin School. In 2017, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres appointed Steiner to head the United Nations Development Programme. Under his leadership, UNDP has continued to expand its support to countries implementing the 2030 Agenda and SDGs. Building on existing partnerships with the private sector, Steiner has also invested in new platforms for UNDP’s cooperation related to the insurance sector and financial markets in development as well as the Green Commodities Programme, and new initiatives such as SDG Impact financing for SDGs and the Lion’s Share.
Mr. Steiner will join fellow notable recipients of the Adam Smith Prize such as Former President of Germany Dr. Horst Köhler, Minister of Finance Hans Eichel and EU Commissioner Dr. Janez Potočnik.