DavidAttenborough will receive the International Documentary Association (IDA)'s2003 Career Achievement Award during the 19th annual IDAdistinguished documentary achievement awards gala in Los Angeles on Dec 12.

'Sir DavidAttenborough has made incomparable contributions to advancing our understandingand appreciation of natural history," said IDA President Michael Donaldson in astatement. "His 13-part series Life on Earth has already been seen by nearly a halfbillion people around the world, and it will surely endure for posterity."

Attenboroughstudied zoology before joining the BBC in 1952; he became controller of BBC2 in1965 and under his leadership, the channel produced epic documentary serieslike CiviliSation andThe Ascent Of Man.

In 1969, he wasnamed director of programmes for both BBC1 and BBC2, but in 1973 left to becomea natural history programme writer/producer, the results of which will be hislasting legacy.