15 facts you probably didn’t know about the Nobel Prize

Of October 4 to 11 the announcement of the winners of the Nobel Prizesso a former member of committee in charge of choosing winners and professor of Monterey Tech count some facts and curiosities of this recognition that perhaps you did not know.

Bertil Andersson, who it was President of Nobel Committee for Chemistry in 1997it is professor stara model that leads to experts to teach several campuses at the same time using telepresence.

The Swedish academic shared to CONNECT some little known facts about this award.

1. Alfred Nobel, creator of dynamite, inspired them

alfred nobel was born in Stockholm, Sweden, in 1833. He was an engineer and inventor who built bridges and buildings, and who patented the explosive compounds of the dynamite and nitroglycerin.

He wrote poetry and plays. Nobel was also very interested in social and peace-related issues. These interests were reflected in the awards that bear his name. He passed away in 1896.

2. The awards were created thanks to his will

Alfred Nobel had no children, so he decided that his fortune would not remain in the hands of his relatives and in his will asked to be will create a reward of various categories.

In this way, your fortune was invested and earmarked for the creation of the Nobel Prizeswhich recognizes from 1901 investigations in the categories of Physical, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature, Peace and later on Economy.

They have been awarded 923 people Y 27 organizations Come in 1901 and 2019, some of them awarded more than once, for a total of 919 individuals and 24 unique organizations awarded.

3. This award does not discriminate nationalities

Bertil Andersson mentioned that the swedish king was angry when Alfred Nobel asked in his will that will not be taken into account the nationality to get a prize.

“It is my wish that in the awards ceremony the nationality of the candidates, but the most valuable be the ones who receive rewardwhether they are Scandinavian or not”it reads in will of Nobel.

“It was a stage of nationalism and the king was very angry with this donor to give money a foreignAndersson commented.

“It is my wish that in the awards ceremony the nationality of the candidates is not taken into consideration, but that the most valuable are those who receive the award, whether they are Scandinavian or not.”

4. Only 5% of the winners are women

Even though the women were included in the awards since the early yearsonly 54 times women have been awarded among 1901 and 2019.

The first woman in getting a laureate it was Marie Curie in 1903 in Physical for his investigation of the radiation.

Marie also received the Chemistry Nobel Prize later in 1911 for the discovery of the elements radium and polonium, being the Only Woman to receive it in 2 occasions in different categories.

Nobel Prize Giving
Photo: AFP

5. The Nobel Peace Prize exists thanks to a woman

Andersson mentions that alfred nobel I was afraid that the world outside destroyed for his invention of nitroglycerine and the dynamite.

So concerned for the topic and Influenced by Countess Bertha von Suttner of Austria, added peace like a category from his reward.

Von Suttner it was writer Y peace promoter and it was the first woman who got the Peace Nobel in 1905 and the second woman in getting a laureate after Marie Curie.

6. There are 3 Mexicans who have obtained a Nobel

The first mexican in getting the Nobel Peace Prize it was Alfonso Garcia Robles in 1982, for participating in some of the sessions for the disarm on the UN.

The second mexican in getting a Nobel Prize it was Octavio Paz in 1990 who won the award in the category of Literature.

the chemist Mario Molina would be the third Mexican to obtain this award when in nineteen ninety five received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

7. The youngest and the oldest to win

The activist Pakistani Malala Yousafzai is the younger person to receive an award when their 17 years in 2014 got the Nobel Peace Prize.

Andersson also comments that the oldest person to win a Nobel Prize is John Goodenough who in 2019 got the Chemistry Nobel Prize to the 97 years old.

Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist
Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist. Photo: AFP

8. It is believed that there is no Nobel Prize in mathematics due to spiteful love

Though There is not a Official register this historythe teacher Andersson mentioned that there is belief that one girlfriend of Alfred Nobel is the reason about what Does not exist a reward for the math.

“It was said that (alfred) had one girlfriend when was young and that she ran away with a mathematician and he was upset for the rest of his life and that’s why mathematicians wouldn’t get their money.”Andersson commented.

9. The Nobel Prize for Economics did not exist in the beginning

In the will of laureate only appeared 5 categories: Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Literature and Peace.

However the Swedish Central Bank created the Nobel Prize in Economics which was delivered by first time in 1969 and it has been accepted What one more of prizes by the Nobel Foundation.

“The Nobel Prize in Economics not originally a Nobel Prize but rather a reward to memory of Alfred Noble”Andersson said.

Gold Nobel Prize Medal

10. Nobel prizes are not awarded to deceased people

exist various requirements for the reception of Nobel Prizesuch as that No there may be more than 3 people in a category.

One of those requirements from 1974 is that the reward I know deliver the winners alive therefore, a deceased person cannot be nominated.

However the Nobel Prize in Medicine of 2011 Ralph Steinman He died 3 days before the award, so it was delivered posthumous manner.

11. The winners receive a financial prize

The winners of each category get SEK 9 millionwhich are equivalent to more than $19.3 million pesos.

In addition, the winners receive a unique diploma created by Swedish and Norwegian artists and calligraphers along with a medal of 18 karat gold recycling handmade.

Nobel Prize medal and certificate

12. On 49 occasions the prizes were not awarded

Some award categories have been discontinued a total of 49 times.

The most of the times that suspended it was during the First World War of 1914 to 1918 and the Second World War of 1939 to 1945.

13. The process to choose winners takes almost a year

The January 31 of each year receive approximately 400 nominations for prizes, which are reviewed by selection committees.

“The winners They don’t make up their minds over dinner. It’s a long process how hard one yearAndersson asserted.

These nominations They may be made solely for past winners, scandinavian teachers of the matter, representatives of centers of excellence Y internationally renowned scientists.

14. They decline to receive the award

The French Jean-Paul Sartredeclined in 1964 to receive the Nobel Prize for Literature. In 1973, Le Duc Thofrom Vietnam, refused to receive the Peace Nobel.

In the 30’s, Adolfo Hitler banned the germans Richard Kuhn, Adolf Butenandt Y Gerhard Domagkto receive the Nobel, the first two in Chemistry, and the last in Medicine.

in 1958 Boris Pasternakinitially agreed to receive the Nobel Prize in Literature, but was later forced by the government of the Soviet Union to reject the award.

15. They receive award under arrest

the german journalist Carl von Ossietzkythe Burmese activist Aung San Suu Kyi and the Chinese activist liu xiaobo they were awarded while in prison.

The importance of awards

For Neil Hernandez, research director of the Tecnologico de Monterreysays that the Nobel Prizes they recognize the work of scientists who seek the benefit of human beings.

“They are a stimulus for any researcher who dedicates his life to science and the generation of knowledge.

He recalled that in 2020, during the 50 Research and Development Congressthere was the presence at the Tec de Monterrey of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2009, Ada Jonathwho attracted the recognition of teachers and students attending it.


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15 facts you probably didn’t know about the Nobel Prize