Renowned academic and public intellectual, Professor Jane Carruthers has been unveiled as the Editor-in-Chief of the South African Journal of Science.
The Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) has announced that Professor Carruthers has taken over from Dr John Butler-Adam who had been Editor-in-Chief since November 2012.
Carruthers, who is currently Emeritus Professor in the Department of History at the University of South Africa (UNISA) and a Research Associate of the Centre for Invasion Biology at the University of Stellenbosch, is a pioneer of environmental history in South Africa and a leader in global and transnational environmental history.
She has been a critical policy adviser to South African National Parks and has raised awareness among scientists, sociologists and activists about the human side of conservation efforts, encouraging thinking beyond advocacy for the environment in isolation to environmentalism that embraces social and political history.
She has also made important contributions to transnational research, comparing Australian and South African national parks and her work has been inspirational in the fields of animal studies, natural resource management, the history of biology and the broader environmental humanities.
Carruthers taught in the History Department at UNISA from 1980 and remained at the institution until her retirement as Research Professor in 2012.
She has been a member of ASSAf since 2012 and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa having been elected in 2007. She has also held a B1 – rating from the National Research Foundation (NRF) since 2008.
Carruthers has held leadership positions in numerous societies and editorial boards and was founding President of the International Consortium of Environmental History Organisations, based at Duke University.
She served as Chair of the Academic Advisory Board of the Rachel Carson Centre for Environment and Society, Ludwig Maximilian University and the Deutsches Museum in Munich. She was also the first female president of the South African Historical Society and served from 2007 to 2009.
Carruthers is a recipient of numerous academic awards and recently received the 2018 Distinguished Scholar Award from the American Society for Environmental History, the highest prize in the discipline of Environmental History.
She is the first person outside the US, and the second woman, to receive this prestigious award. This was in recognition of her sterling work and critical contribution to the fields of environmental justice, national parks and preservation, and transnational environmental history. She has also been a runner up for a lifetime achievement award from both the National Science and Technology Forum in 2015, and the Human Sciences Research Council in 2017. An accomplished author, she has published seven sole-authored books, one co-authored book, 30 chapters in books and more than 60 articles in peer reviewed journals. She currently serves on the editorial boards of five international and local journals and is the book review editor of the Transactions of the Royal Society of South Africa.
She previously served on the editorial boards of six other journals.