Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in 2015 and has been refreshed.
The first Nobel Prize was awarded more than a century ago. The prizes were established as per the will Alfred Nobel made in 1895 in which he dedicated the majority of his wealth to honor those who had made “the most important discovery or invention” in the fields of physics, chemistry, and physiology or medicine, literature, and peace. Along with this declaration, Nobel laid down the statutes for awarding the prizes. The Nobel Prize has become a representation of the highest honor conferred upon an academic for his or her intellectual achievement.
However, do the century-old statutes of recognizing scientific achievement reflect the science culture of today? Should the Nobel Committee revisit the old rules and make amendments that would make the Nobel Prize more accommodative of the changing research landscape? Why are the Nobel Prizes criticized?