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Most Nobel Prize Winners by Country and University

  1. Apr 30, 2004 #1
    Most Nobel Prize by Countries from 1901 - 2002

    1. United States - 261
    2. United Kingdom - 79
    3. Germany - 61
    4. France - 28
    5. Switzerland - 22
    6. Sweden - 18
    7. Russia - 11
    8. Netherlands - 9
    9. Denmark - 8
    10. Japan - 7

    Most Nobel Prize by Countries. Last 15 years Only

    1. United States - 93
    2. United Kingdom - 9
    3. Germany - 8
    4. France - 4
    Japan - 4
    Switzerland - 4
    7. Canada - 2
    8. Denmark - 1
    Netherlands - 1
    Norway - 1
    Russia - 1
    Sweden - 1

    Most Nobel Prize by University from 1901 - 2002

    1. Harvard University (MA, USA) - 28
    2. University of Cambridge (UK) - 23
    3. Max-Planck-Gesellschaft Munich (Germany) - 18
    4. Stanford University (CA, USA) - 17
    University of London (UK) - 17
    6. Mass. Institute of Techology (MA, USA) - 15
    University of Chicago (IL, USA) - 15
    8. Cal. Institute of Technology (CA, USA) - 14
    UC Berkeley (CA, USA) - 14
    10. Columbia University (NY, USA) - 12
    11. Princeton University (NJ, USA) - 11

    Most Nobel Prize by University. Last 25 years only.

    1. Stanford University (CA, USA) - 11
    2. Harvard University (MA, USA) - 10
    Mass. Institute of Technology (MA, USA) - 10
    University of Chicago (IL, USA) - 10
    5. Princeton University (NJ, USA) - 8
    Max-Planck-Gesellschaft Munich (Germany) - 8
    7. Cal Institute of Technology (CA, USA) - 5
    UC Berkeley (CA, USA) - 5
    Columbia University (NY, USA) - 5
    University of Cambridge (UK) - 5
    University of Washington (WA, USA) - 5

    Source: http://aaawww.fh-pforzheim.de/intoff/iopub/NOBEL03/land.html
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 30, 2004 #2


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    BlackVision, you forgot to say why you are posting this. What are we supposed to be looking for here?
  4. Apr 30, 2004 #3
    It's simply healthy knowledge that's all. Shall we make a discussion out of the stats? Alright.

    It seems quite clear that America is dominating high education. With 93 Nobel Prizes going to America in the past 15 years. UK at a distant second with 9. Also 9 of the top 11 universities are American. Why the large gaps? What is America doing that everyone else isn't?
  5. Apr 30, 2004 #4
    Oh and I forgot to add. University of Cambridge is certainly a prestigious university and historically one of the best. But they seem to have dropped out quite a bit in the past couple decades slipping behind many US universities. Notice overall, they rank #2 in most Nobel Prizes won but almost completely drop out of the top 10 for the "past 25 years" list.

    So how did University of Cambridge manage to slip behind? Why is one of the best universities historically now lagging behind others?
  6. Apr 30, 2004 #5


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    I agree it is good to know all kinds of things like that. You dont have to have a reason or even discuss it if you dont care to.

    My feeling is that it would be interesting to get another list which would
    be "by country of birth" for the past 25 years

    this would give an idea of where the Laureates went to highschool (and undergrad college)

    just listing "by research institution" you could be counting a lot of
    European educated people (and Israeli, Indian etc. too) who get offered a big salary and a nice
    laboratory---good working conditions, topnotch colleagues----if they
    will move to USA. it could be showing an effect of the high bidder grabs
    the Laureate after he or she has already discovered something
  7. Apr 30, 2004 #6


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    Marcus, you read my mind, I was wondering how many of the US prize winners were not actually from the US.

    Also, I wonder how much effort and support are devoted to nominating someone for a prize. It is a feather in the cap of a university to be able to cite the number of Nobel Prize winners they have, so I wonder if certain universities make more of an effort than others.
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2004
  8. Apr 30, 2004 #7


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    Oh, there is a HUGE political component to the nomination process. It is very much about who you know, not just what you know, to get the nomination letters from the right people to be noticed.
  9. Apr 30, 2004 #8


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    One other note. When you consider population, number of research institutions and amount of science funding, proportionally speaking, some of those other countries probably start to really outshine the US. We just have more people and places to draw from.
  10. May 1, 2004 #9


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    Translation: The US has a system that attracts leading researchers from other countries and provides them with what they need to do Nobel quality work, so therefore the US lead in Nobels is phoney?
  11. May 1, 2004 #10


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    I wouldn't say "phoney," but more that it shouldn't be looked at as simply as numbers only. The scientific community really is international. Nobody gets by and does really well without some interaction outside their own country, so as much as we want to claim the US is better, it's really not a very meaningful comparison. Also consider that each of those winners has also gotten where they are through the hard work and dedication of many, many graduate students and post-docs. One person gets the credit, but it's usually an entire community of researchers that contributes to the discovery that gets the recognition.
  12. May 1, 2004 #11


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    IIRC, there have seen some studies into the sociology of the Nobel Prizes, with results including a few fascinating 'Nobel trains future Nobel' cases. So it would seem that it's not only a certain institutional environment that can make a difference, but also there are certain leadership/personality/whatever components.

    More data to show that science has a strong 'social' dimension?
  13. May 1, 2004 #12


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    Not just winners train other winners, but they also tend to be in the same social circles. We have a person here who was nominated for the Nobel...there was a symposium honoring him this past year, and as part of that, a dinner with presentations and slide show about his career and life, etc. Lots of pictures shown of him hanging out with other former Nobel Prize winners...so and so out fishing with him, so and so at a dinner at his house, so and so a fellow faculty member at this or that university. What can I say? I made sure someone took a picture of me with him! You never know whether that sort of thing might actually rub off ;-)
  14. Jun 30, 2004 #13

    WOW! This means that British people are about 1/3d more intelligent than Americans, since per capita, they have far more nobel prizes!!

    This is amazing!
  15. Jun 30, 2004 #14


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    WOOOOOOOWWWWH! Take a step back here! You can't be serious right? :eek:

    The US is a huge nation and thus will have proportionally more nobel prizes if the intellectal properties were the same in both countries. You also need to understand that most likely all the people winning these nobel prizes in the US are not US natives.

    It is well known that there's an intellectual exodus from other countries into the US, this started at the time of WOII where the Germans were on the hunt for intellectuals and were especially keen on certain groups of people. To name one intellectual that had to flee to the US because of this: Einstein. There were many more that followed him at that time. It was this, I believe, that precipitated the intellectual environment and has been feeding the hunger of other scientists to come there.

    Does anyone have the stats? I think that before WOII European countries were infact getting more nobel prizes than the US and that this all changed after WOII due to the reason I mentioned.
  16. Jun 30, 2004 #15
    United States population in 1900: 75 million
    United Kingdom population in 1900: 35 million

    United States population in 2004: 293 million
    United Kingdom population in 2004: 60 million

    United States was a little over double the population of the UK in 1900. Today it is close to 5X the population of the UK. Somehow I doubt you took this into consideration. Did you research how many Nobel Prizes the United States and the United Kingdom won every single year from 1901 to today and correlate it to the population of that year.
  17. Jun 30, 2004 #16

    Wow!!! Am I seeing this right? Sweden 18?

    So this basically means that Sweden has TWICE AS MANY Nobel prize winners than the United States, per capita?

    WOW!!! Sweden is TWICE AS SMART!!! Good grief!

    And Switzerland, with its 7 million inhabitants even more!!!

    My God, the United States is really a backward country!
  18. Jun 30, 2004 #17
    Even so 93 to 9 is a huge difference. Even after per capita taken into consideration.

    Now all this is going off topic. I never stated that everyone that won a Nobel Prize in America is a native of America. My words were "dominating high education" Now if high intellectuals from other countries are choosing to go to America to do their research, that only further shows the truth to my statement that America is "dominating high education" Why else would intellectuals from other countries study and do their research in America if not for the better standards in high education?
  19. Jun 30, 2004 #18
    Go back and read my post again. Then come back with the population of every year for Sweden. from 1901 to today. Same for the US. Then list the amount of Nobel Prizes won every single year from 1901 to today for both Sweden to US. After we have those numbers, then you can actually start comparing. I assure you Sweden did not have a 7 million population in 1901. Your statistical ability here is quite poor.
    Last edited: Jun 30, 2004
  20. Jun 30, 2004 #19
    Interestingly, some 25 to 30 percent of these noble prize winners are Jewish, far in excess of their population percentage. Could this be the result of their highest IQ average of 117, which is as much above White as White is above Black?
  21. Jun 30, 2004 #20
    No, I don't believe in the value of the notion of "IQ" if this implies "genetic superiority" or "racial superiority". I think Jews' success is due to the fact that Jews have a far denser social network and are a much more disciplined group, with a history of persecution, which tends to stimulate group cohesion.

    It's basically a socio-cultural matter, nothing more.

    "Intelligence" as a biological or evolutionary factor has to do with small variations stretching over hundreds of thousands of years, basically a geologic time-scale, in which ethnic identity as we know it plays no role whatsoever.

    And please, see my "per capita" post; you will notice that the Barbarian Iceland Vikings are the smartest people on the planet. Now those Icelandic barbarians are clearly a race apart (sharp long straight noses -- anti-Jew noses -- tall, blue eyed, pale skinned, blonde and with heavy bones).
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