It is considered the most important science prize in the world – the Nobel Prize.
Since 1901, it has been awarded annually by the Nobel Foundation in the categories of physics, chemistry, medicine, literature, economics and peace. This was originally founded on the basis of the “last will and testament” by the Swedish chemist and inventor Alfred Nobel (1833 – 1896). In his will, Nobel stipulated that his fortune be used to establish a foundation, the interest on which would be “allocated as a prize to those who have rendered the greatest benefit to mankind in the past year” (Moller, 2023). Although the prizes will not be presented by the King of Sweden until December 10, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death, in Stockholm, this year’s winners have already been officially announced in recent days.
The Nobel Prize in Medicine is awarded to Hungarian researcher Katalin Kariko and U.S. scientist Drew Weissman for their “groundbreaking results” on the development of mRNA vaccines against covid-19, which “have fundamentally changed our understanding of how mRNA interacts with the human immune system.” Awardees contributed “to the unprecedented pace of vaccine development during one of the greatest threats to human health in modern times” (see Moller, 2023). Ferenc Krausz (Germany) and Anne L’Huillier and Pierre Agostini, originally from France, will receive this year’s Nobel Prize in Physics for their experimental methods for generating “attosecond light pulses.” Their work had “provided mankind with new tools for exploring the world of electrons in atoms and molecules” as well as “opened the door to extremely small units of time” (Meyer, 2023). Moungi Bawendi (USA), Louis Brus (USA) and Alexei Ekimov (Russia) receive the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for the discovery and development of so-called quantum dots (tiny nanoparticles). They are used, among other things, in modern screens, LED lamps and also in tumor surgery, and are also important for quantum computers. This year, the Norwegian author Jon Fosse receives the Nobel Prize for Literature for his innovative plays and prose – giving “a voice to the unspeakable” (cf. Moller, 2023).
The Nobel Peace Prize is awarded in Oslo, Norway, instead of Sweden’s capital Stockholm, the only exception. Probably because during Nobel’s lifetime Sweden and Norway were united in a union under Swedish leadership. While Sweden was responsible for foreign policy, domestic issues were handled by Norway.
The chairwoman of the Oslo Committee, announced that this year Iranian women’s rights activist Narges Mohammadi will receive the Nobel Peace Prize “for her fight against the oppression of women in Iran and her struggle to promote human rights and freedom for all.” U.S. economist Claudia Goldin will be awarded this year’s Nobel Prize in Economics for her research on “uncovering the main causes of gender differences in the labor market.”
Augsburger Allgemeine: Nobelpreis 2023
NRD: Nobelpreis – Eine Geschichte von Ehre, Ruhm und Geld
RND: Friedensnobelpreis in Oslo
Deutschlandfunk: Nobelpreis Physik 2023
Daily News: Nobelpreis Chemie 2023
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