2019 Blavatnik National Awards for Young Scientists Ceremony Highlights
The Blavatnik National Awards honor America’s most innovative young faculty-rank scientists and engineers.
These awards celebrate the past accomplishments and future potential of young faculty members working in the three disciplinary categories of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences & Engineering, and Chemistry.
Every year, one Blavatnik National Awards Laureate in each disciplinary category will receive $250,000 in unrestricted funds, and additional nominees will be recognized as Finalists.
“Our goal is to recognize and celebrate exceptional young scientists—to make them examples of what the next generation of young scientists should strive to achieve. The Blavatnik Family Foundation is providing critical support to seed innovative work in science and technology that will address society's most pressing global problems.”
—Len Blavatnik, Founder and Chairman of Access Industries and head of the Blavatnik Family Foundation
Nominations are accepted from an invited group of research universities, independent research institutions, academic medical centers, and government laboratories from around the United States, as well as from the Awards’ own Scientific Advisory Council, composed of renowned science and technology leaders. Past Laureates of the Blavatnik National Awards are also invited to submit nominations. The program expands on an awards program, started in 2007, for young scientists in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
Members of the Jury responsible for selecting the Blavatnik National Awards honorees are some of the nation’s most distinguished scientists. Both the Blavatnik National Awards Scientific Advisory Council and Jury include Nobel Laureates, National Medal of Science recipients, and National Academy of Sciences members.
The Blavatnik National Awards are conferred at a formal ceremony in New York City each fall.
“The focus on young people and on forming bonds that go beyond simple monetary reward is deliberate, and I think inspired.”
— Dr. Frank Wilczek,
Nobel Prize in Physics, 2004
“The Blavatnik Awards program is very important as it recognizes the potential impact of our research. It identifies emerging scientific thought leaders and highlights their work to the broader scientific community. It is a wonderful stimulus for a young scientist that increases self-confidence to pursue his or her dreams.”
— Dr. Elisa Oricchio,
2012 Blavatnik Awards winner and Research Fellow of the Cancer Biology & Genetics Program at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
“Young scientists drive scientific discovery and innovation. They feel urgency and impatience. They think creatively and boldly. While we must support promising scientists at all levels, young scientists are a critical resource that we must nurture for the good of the whole scientific enterprise.”
— Dr. Eric Lander,
Director of the Broad Institute of Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology
“A lot of effort and thought has gone into the design of the program, and the choice of recipients. The focus on young people and on forming bonds that go beyond simple monetary reward is deliberate, and I think inspired.”
— Dr. Frank Wilczek,
Nobel Laureate, Herman Feshbach Professor of Physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
“There are a few awards for young scientists, but almost all of them are based on proposals that you submit, and not on the actual work that you do as a young scientist. The Blavatnik Awards is true recognition of the work of young scientists; it is unique in that sense. There is no equivalent.”
— Dr. Michal Lipson,
2010 Blavatnik Awards faculty winner, MacArthur Fellow, and Associate Professor in the Nanophotonics Research Group at Cornell University
“I am very enthusiastic about this concept. For me the winner is not so important. The value lies in acknowledging that our young are the creative thinkers and the best role models for our students.”
— Dr. Regis Kelly,
Director, California Institute for Quantitative Biosciences
“Many breakthroughs come from people working on the fringes of their subject. Interdisciplinary science ensures that this is happening, because it is often unexplored territory.”
— Dr. Richard Roberts,
Nobel Laureate, Chief Scientific Officer of the New England Biolabs
“In contrast to the proliferation of awards aimed at renowned senior scientists, the Blavatnik Awards will recognize the value of empowering scientists when they are young and can benefit from early recognition.”
— Dr. Torsten Wiesel,
Nobel Laureate, President Emeritus of the Rockefeller University, and Chairman Emeritus of the Academy