Dr Leena Srivastava, Executive Director Operations, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) has been appointed Knight of the Order of Academic Palms (Chevalier dans l'Ordre des Palmes Academiques) by the Prime Minister of the French Republic.
The Knighthood has been conferred on Dr Srivastava for her immense contributions to the field of environment, sustainable development, and her persistent contribution towards academics and scientific research at TERI University as Dean, Academics. Dr Srivastava in her illustrated career as a scientist, academician and an economist has established strong ties between French, American and European universities which have lead to successful collaborations. She has been actively participating in international forums dealing with the subject of climate change and its policy dimensions.
The Order of Academic Palms is one of the oldest civil distinctions in France. It was originally created by Napolean in 1808 to honour eminent members of the University of France. Today, the Academic Palm honours those who render important services to the French National Education and contribute to the intellectual, scientific, and artistic influence of France in the world.
Originally, the palmes académiques were only given to teachers or professors. In 1866, the scope of the award was widened to include major contributions to French national education made by anybody, including foreigners. It was also made available to French nationals outside of France who had made major contributions to the expansion of French culture in the rest of the world.
This is the second time TERI is receiving a Knighthood honour from the French government. In 2006, Dr RK Pachauri, Director General, TERI received the award of Officer of the Legion of Honour - the highest decoration in France.