William Laurance William Laurance is a Distinguished Research Professor and Australian Laureate at James Cook University in Cairns, Australia. He also holds the Prince Bernhard Chair in International Nature Conservation at Utrecht University, Netherlands. An environmental scientist whose work spans the tropical world, he has written eight books and over 600 scientific and popular articles. He is a fellow of the Australian Academy of Science and the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences, and former President of the Association for Tropical Biology and Conservation. He has received many professional honorus, including the Heineken Environment Prize, BBVA Frontiers in Ecology and Conservation Biology Award, the Society for Conservation Biology's Distinguished Service Award, and the Zoological Society of London's Outstanding Conservation Achievement Prize. He is director of the Centre for Tropical Environmental and Sustainability Science at James Cook University, and founded and directs the Alliance of Leading Environmental Researchers Thinkers (ALERT), a science-outreach group that reaches 1-2 million readers weekly. He is a four-time winner of Australia's Best Science Writing Award.