Who is the most influential scientist today?

  • #1
I've been reading about the life of different scientist like Newton, Albert Einstein and Ramanujan and a question came to my mind
Who do you think is the most important or influential scientist today?
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Astronuc
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That is really a poor question, because there are so many areas of physics (or other sciences and mathematics, are related fields) in which an individual can practice, teach or otherwise contribute.

I don't know of anyone who is singularly important to the exclusion of others.
 
  • #3
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I've been reading about the life of different scientist like Newton, Albert Einstein and Ramanujan and a question came to my mind
Who do you think is the most important or influential scientist today?
Ed Witten
 
  • #4
WWGD
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I agree, I don't think there isn't a single main scientist nowadays. Science is growing fast in all its branches, each in several directions and I dont see anyone at the forefront.
 
  • #5
StatGuy2000
Education Advisor
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I agree with other responses that this is a poorly worded question, given the breadth and diversity of the fields of research within the different sciences. So no single scientist would be the most influential.

A better question might be who is the most influential physicist specializing in field X (e.g. solid state physics, statistical physics, optics, cosmology, atomic and molecular physics, particle physics, etc.) today.

You can make similar questions depending on other scientific fields.
 
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  • #6
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Maybe the easiest answer is that the most influential for any given year are those that win the Nobel prize?
 
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  • #8
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Ed Witten
Ed Witten
After seeing that 2 members here had given him the nod, I decided to find out a little more about Ed Witten, and I found this to-me-fascinating monologue:



At 22 minutes in, Ed Witten says:

In fact, the hardest part of research is always to find a question that's big enough that it's worth answering, but little enough that you actually can answer it.​
 
  • #10
BWV
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why would the most influential scientist be a physicist? so 20th century, physics is mostly over
 
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